News - Racing October  26, 2021

Patriotic Games Turns Tables On Fm Im A Zatanaz Too In The $362,675 Firecracker Futurity At Delta

Patriotic Games (#8) gets up over Fm Im A Zatanaz Too (#2) in the Grade 2 $363,675 Firecracker Futurity Saturday night at Delta Downs.

© Coady Photography

VINTON, LA—JULY 4, 2018—Delta Downs hosted a special 11-race program on Wednesday with the main event featuring a strong field of 2-year-olds competing in the $363,675 Firecracker Futurity (G2).

Appropriately enough, the main event on Independence Day card was won by a horse named Patriot Games, who was ridden to victory by John Hamilton.

Owned by Ramiro Jaime Flores, Sr. and trained by Eduardo Morales, Patriotic Games settled an old score with Fm Im A Zatanaz Too, who defeated him by a neck in the Sam Houston Futurity (G2) earlier in the year. This time the tables were turned as Patriotic Games battled with Fm Im A Zatanaz Too before beating him by a head in the 350-yard test. Throw Th Dice finished another half-length behind the top pair in third.

Patriotic Games covered the distance over a fast track in :17.474 seconds, which earned him a speed index of 95.

The winner’s prize in the Firecracker Futurity this year was $181,338 and it raised Patriotic Games’ bankroll to $298,910. He has now won three of six career starts and finished second three times as well.

The winning connections of Patriotic Games accept the Firecracker Futurity stakes trophy Wednesday evening at Delta Downs. © Coady Photography
Bred in Texas by Bob and/or Jerry Gaston, Patriotic Games became the 256th stakes winner sired by all-time leading sire First Down Dash. The 2-year-old out of the Game Patriot mare Miss Game Tee was also second in the Grade 3 Harrah's Entertainment Futurity in March. He was purchased at the Heritage Place Yearling Sale in 2017 for $38,000.

Sent to the gate as the second choice of the betting public, Patriotic Games paid $6.20 to win, $3 to place and $2.80 to show. Fm Im A Zatanaz Too returned $2.60 to place and $2.60 to show. Throw Th Dice was worth $10.40 to show.

In addition to his score with Patriotic Games, Hamilton rode three more winners on the program Wednesday night. The five-time Delta Downs leading rider is battling with Luis Vivanco for the top spot this year and with three days to go in the season Hamilton is now within one win of his rival at 40 wins to 39.

Jockey John Hamilton got his 39th seasonal win at Delta Downs on the 4th of July race card aboard Firecracker Futurity(G2) winner Patriotic Games. © Coady Photography
Runner-up Fm Im A Zatanaz Too suffered his first career loss in four starts this season. Trainer Robert Meche saddled the son of champion sire Tempting Dash, from the Mr Jess Perry mare Dashingfordestiny, for owner Jose Hernandez. Bred in Utah by McColee Land & Livestock LLC, the sorrel gelding sold in the 2017 Ruidoso Select Yearling Sale under the name Whatchagotcooking for $20,000.

Ridden by jockey Manuel Gutierrez, Fm Im A Zatanaz Too earned $61,655 for his second-place effort to push his seasonal bankroll to $243,295.

Third-place finisher Throw Th Dice, a $12,500 Heritage Place Yearling Sale graduate, races for owner Palomino Trucking, Inc. and trainer Jose Gamez. Jockey Jorge Linares had the riding call aboard the American Runaway filly from the multiple stakes-producing Strawfly Special mare Modice.

Bred in Texas by Bobby D. Cox, Throw Th Dice has compiled a (3) 2-0-0 record and the $36,526 Firecracker payday bumped her earnings total to nearly $50,000.

Moment Of Fury, Parti Wagon, Deisel Freight Train, Iona Ec, Boldt, Jess Mad and Enid Girl completed the field.

Delta Downs will continue its final week of American Quarter Horse racing on Thursday night with a 12-race program that features the $20,000 Par-A-Dice Stakes for 3-year-olds and up competing at 300 yards. There will be a special post time of 5:45 pm for the final three nights of the season, which wraps up on Saturday.

For more information about the upcoming season visit the track’s website at or on the Facebook page, ‘Delta Downs Racing’. The track’s Twitter handle is @deltaracing.

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Delta Downs Racetrack Casino and Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Delta Downs is located in Vinton, Louisiana, on Delta Downs Drive. From Lake Charles, take Exit 7 and from Texas, take Exit 4.

Courtesy Ses