News - Racing October  24, 2021

Blood Money Stays Perfect Winning The $826,620 Lee Berwick Futurity At Delta Downs

Blood Money picked up his second graded stakes win on Saturday in the $826,620 Lee Berwick Futurity(RG1) at Delta Downs.

© Coady Photography

VINTON, LA—JULY 31, 2021—Delta Downs closed out its 2021 American Quarter Horse season on Saturday with a special 10-race program billed as Louisiana Showcase Day. The exciting afternoon of racing included eight stakes races for Louisiana-bred horses and the richest race of the year, the $826,620 Lee Berwick Futurity (RG1).

The Lee Berwick field of nine was headed by Rojas Racing Stables, LLC’s Blood Money, who recorded the fastest 350-yard qualifying time during two days of trials back on July 9 and 10. Blood Money also brought an undefeated record of three wins in as many starts into the race including a score in the $346,842 Louisiana Laddie Futurity (RG2) earlier in the season.

All eyes were on the 3-5 wagering favorite as the field left the gate, but Blood Money did not have the fastest of starts as San Lorenzeaux grabbed the early lead in the 350-yard test for 2-year-olds. As the pair opened a clear advantage on the rest of the field, Blood Money began to rally and dug in with determination as the wire got closer and closer. When the pair hit the finish line the outcome was still in doubt.

Betty Berwick presents the winning connections of Blood Money accept the Lee Berwick Futurity stakes trophy on Saturday at Delta Downs. © Coady Photography
After the race, the photo sign was lit on the tote board and it was a few moments before a cheer went up from the crowd as Blood Money was declared the winner. His final margin of victory was just a head over San Lorenzeaux, who fought his heart out in defeat.

Blood Money covered the distance over a fast track in :17.296 seconds, which equaled a speed index of 98.

Valdez described the tremendous attributes of his incredible trainee after the race. “He’s not hot tempered like a lot of the Apollitical Bloods; he’s always been calm, almost a lazy horse, but on the racetrack he’s something special!”

Blood Money earned $413,310 for his win in the Lee Berwick and now boasts a lifetime bankroll of $601,131. The Lee Berwick total purse of $826,620 marked the richest race ever won by Blood Money’s trainer, Rosendo Valdez, and jockey, Everardo Rodriguez, who also won his second riding title at Delta Downs this season.

Blood Money (#7) runs down San Lorenzeaux in the $826,620 Lee Berwick Futurity (RG1) at Delta Downs Saturday. © Coady Photography
“He had a little trouble breaking, but really felt great once he got going," Rodriguez said after the win. "I saw San Lorenzeaux coming about 50 yards before the wire, but knew we had it."

Bred in Louisiana by Spring Hill Farms LLC, Blood Money is by Apollitical Blood, out of the Shazoom mare Zoom To The Money. He was purchased for $17,000 at the Louisiana Quarter Horse Breeders Association Yearling Sale in 2020.

"This horse was really laid back as a baby, almost lazy, he liked to smell the flowers," Springhill Farm owner David Dunn said about 2-year-old on Saturday. "Rosendo sent me a video from his schooling race, that’s when we knew he could run. I never dreamed he’d be this good!"

Blood Money is the third Lee Berwick Futurity(RG1) winner bred by Dunn's Spring Hill Farms. Eyesa Jess Jumpn won the race in 2018 and Dashnunder Afullmoon won in 2017.

A $29,000 LQHBA Yearling Sale graduate, runner-up San Lorenzeaux earned $140,526 for finishing second. Hector Alcala trains the son of Carters Cartel for owner Rogelio Marquez, Jr. Bred by Kenneth Garcia, from the Mr Jess Perry mare Scoopie Coochie, San Lorenzeaux was ridden by jockey Raul Ramirez, Jr.

Tony Doughtie's homebred Tdz Royal Runaway finished two-lengths off the leaders to earn $82,662 for third. The son of Sir Runaway Dash was also third in the Laddie Futurity(RG2) on June 12th. Champion trainer Kenneth Roberts, Sr. conditions the $137,326 earner who was ridden by David Álvarez. Doughtie bred Tdz Royal Runaway from the Hadtobenuts mare Thequeenhasgonenuts.

Sent to the gate as the prohibitive favorite, Blood Money paid $3.40 to win, $2.80 to place and $2.40 to show. San Lorenzeaux returned $7.20 to place and $7.40 to show. Tdz Royal Runaway was worth $5.20 to show.

Railroad Jimmy, Apolliticalfastland, Quid Pro Quo, Jess Louisiana, Sheza Fast Blood and Ultimo Alex completed the field. Angel Guns was scratched.

Delta Downs will now be dark until it’s 2021-22 Thoroughbred season begins on October 13. The track will host live racing each Wednesday and Thursday at 12:55 pm Central Time and on Friday and Saturday evenings starting at 5:55 pm

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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