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Fair Grounds Ends Meet With Stakes Extravaganza

Graded stakes winner First Prize Denim will head the Mid-City Stakes on Saturday at Fair Grounds Race Course.

© Coady Photography


NEW ORLEANS, LA—AUGUST 29, 2016—Fair Grounds Racecourse will end its 10-day summer Quarter Horse meet on Saturday, as the track offers a 10-race closing-day program that features five stakes.

Saturday’s feature race, the 350-yard, $323,488 Louisiana QHBA Sale Futurity (RG1) (see related story), has drawn a full field of 10 state-bred 2-year-olds. Following is a preview of the other four stakes:

Mid-City Stakes

Double H Racing Investments LLC’s First Prize Denim, a graded stakes winning son of world champion Oak Tree Special, will make his first start against older runners in Saturday’s 400-yard, $50,000 Mid-City Stakes (RG3) for Louisiana-breds.

Trained by Martin Trejo, First Prize Denim is coming off of a 1 1/4-length win in the 400-yard, $244,000 Delta Downs Derby (RG3) on July 9. The gelding has won five of his six starts and has banked $289,256.

First Prize Denim drew post 8 and will be ridden by Manuel Gutierrez. His seven opponents include Heza Louisiana Dash, a 4-year-old Heza Fast Dash gelding trained by Kenneth Roberts Sr. for Robert Holland’s TM Ranch. Heza Louisiana Dash will be making his first start since July 9, when he ran second, a head behind winner Open Me A Corona, in the 440-yard, $100,000 Louisiana Classic Stakes (RG2) at Delta Downs.

Gilbert Ortiz will ride Heza Louisiana Dash from post 3.

The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments--

  1. Tm Dees Prize (David Alvarez)
  2. Icanonlyemagine (Donald Watson)
  3. Heza Louisiana Dash (Gilbert Ortiz)
  4. Strong Guns (J.R. Ramirez)
  5. Heza Bell Perry (Antonio Alberto)
  6. Ld Streakin N Leavin (Alfonso Lujan)
  7. Heza Fast Wokatee (Damian Martinez)
  8. First Prize Denim (Manuel Gutierrez).

Lakeview Dash Stakes (R)

Shades Of Buck will try for his second stakes win of the meet in Saturday’s 250-yard, $50,000 Lakeview Dash Stakes (R) for Louisiana-breds.

A 3-year-old son of Game Patriot owned by H & R Roofing and one of three sophomores in the 10-horse field, Shades Of Buck scored a neck victory against open company in the 250-yard, $30,000 Gentilly Dash Stakes on August 20. The gelding drew post 3 and will be ridden by Damian Martinez for trainer Adrian Huitron.

Joel Galindo’s Scoopies Leaving You drew post 10 and will be ridden by Donald Watson. A 5-year-old stallion by Coronas Leaving You trained by Kevin Broussard, Scoopies Leaving You has banked $77,300 from seven starts this season, and his four wins include three stakes victories.

Open Me A Corona will be shortening in distance off of his head win in the 440-yard, $100,000 Louisiana Classic Stakes (RG2) at Delta Downs on July 9. A lifetime earner of $852,758 from 18 outs, the 6-year-old Coronas Leaving You stallion drew post 4 and will be ridden by David Alvarez for owners Charles Forbes Jr. and Tommy Hays and trainer Bobby Martinez.

The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments--

  1. Lets Jess Do It (Alfonso Lujan)
  2. Game (Rolando Cabrera)
  3. Shades Of Buck (Damian Martinez)
  4. Open Me A Corona (David Alvarez)
  5. Swingin Princess (John Hamilton)
  6. Heasablackmagic (J.R. Ramirez)
  7. First Prize Denim (Manuel Gutierrez)
  8. French Oak Tree (Joe Badilla Jr.)
  9. Royal Aztec (Raul Ramirez Jr.)
  10. Scoopies Leaving You (Donald Watson).

French Quarter Stakes

Riley Blanchet’s Cartels Fortune, a multiple stakes winning Louisiana-bred daughter of champion Carters Cartel, will make her 5-year-old debut in Saturday’s 330-yard, $30,000 French Quarter Stakes for fillies and mares.

Cartels Fortune is trained by Christopher Blanchet, and she is coming off of a 4-year-old campaign during which she won the 400-yard, $28,000 Merial Sam Houston Distaff Challenge Stakes at Sam Houston Race Park. The mare drew post 6 and will be ridden by Lucas Constantin.

The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments--

  1. Tac It Sassy (Donald Watson)
  2. Fyre Fly (Luis Guerrero)
  3. Barefoot Beach (Manuel Gutierrez)
  4. Jls Ms Politicaljess (Raul Ramirez Jr.)
  5. Toastin With Coronas (John Hamilton)
  6. Cartels Fortune (Lucas Constantin)
  7. Miss Mallard Struts (Damian Martinez)
  8. Punctuality (David Alvarez).

LQHBA Sale Invitational Stakes (R)

Narciso Flores’ Swinginstar, a homebred Swingin Jess colt trained by Bobby Martinez, is one of 10 state-bred juveniles entered in Saturday’s 350-yard, $35,943 Louisiana QHBA Sale Invitational Stakes (R).

Swinginstar has won three of his four outs and has earned $39,606, and he was a finalist in the 350-yard, $690,000 Lee Berwick Memorial Futurity (RG1) at Delta Downs on July 9. The colt drew post 6 and will be ridden by Damian Martinez.

The complete lineup, in post position order including jockey assignments--

  1. Operator On Fire (John Hamilton)
  2. Mr Jess Black (Randy Edison)
  3. Racing Kane (Manuel Gutierrez)
  4. Tee Mata (Raul Ramirez Jr.)
  5. Fast Streakin Nick (Joe Badilla Jr.)
  6. Swinginstar (Damian Martinez)
  7. Royal Quick Patriot (Donald Watson)
  8. Big Daddy Bux (J.R. Ramirez)
  9. Sir Dre (David Alvarez)
  10. Rf My Special Duck (Rolando Cabrera).

Courtesy Ses