All American Countdown, Sunday, September 3
Cars were backed up to the highway at Ruidoso Downs Race Track Sunday afternoon. Shuttles were running nonstop to take race enthusiasts to and from the track for a big day of racing. After the races were over, the third day of the Ruidoso Select Yearling Sale started at 6:00 p.m. Later that evening the Sam Thompson Memorial Scholarship Silent Auction came to a close. The Silent Auction donations brought in an astounding amount of $50,000. The donations go toward scholarships for Quarter Horse Racing Industry youth and adults for higher education.
Seven out of the eleven races on the program for Sunday were for Quarter Horses. The Quarter Horse stakes races, included the Bill Reed Memorial Stakes, the First Down Dash Stakes, the All American Gold Cup-G1, and the All American Derby-G1. The program also included the Rio Grande Senorita Thoroughbred Futurity. Between races 5 and 6, the Sam Thompson Memorial Jockey Award was presented by Speedhorse Magazine and the Jockeys' Guild. This year's winner was Cesar De Alba from Cypress, California.
The first Quarter Horse stakes race of the day was race #3, the $20,000 Bill Reed Memorial Stake. Rock A Billy (Rock Solid Jess-Imaginiff, Game Patriot) under Benito Baca, won by 3 ¾ lengths. He is bred and owned by Rockin J Running Horses and trained by Tammy Johnson. Circustown Flyer placed second and D E Wagons Strawfly placed third.
The next Quarter Horse stakes race was race #6, the $100,000 First Down Dash Stakes, for the horses that competed in the All American Derby trials and did not qualify for the finals, but had the 10 fastest times of the nonqualifiers. Tough To Bee (Apollitical Jess-Peppermint Seis, Tres Seis) made a dash for the finish line winning by a neck over Imperial Eagle and Eyesa Texan. He is bred by James and Marilyn Helzer, owned by Paragon Farms, LLC, trained by Trey Wood and ridden by Ricky Ramirez.
The third Quarter Horse stakes race on the program was race #8, the $200,000 All American Gold Cup-G1. It was comprised of a field of impressive horses, age 3 year old and upward. 2016 World Champion Jessies First Down (FDD Dynasty-Jess A Classy Lassy, Mr Jess Perry) made an authoritative win by 2 ½ lengths under jockey Rodrigo Vallejo, bred and owned by Ted G. Abrams and trained by Jimmy Padgett, II. Coming in second was Zoomin Effortlessly and placing third was Apollitical OK. Unfortunately, Zoomin Effortlessly suffered a fatal heart attack in the test barn following the race.
The ninth race on the program was the $134,770 Rio Grande Senorita Thoroughbred Futurity won by Fast Gator under Ry Eikleberry, owned and bred by J. Kirk & Judy Robison and trained by Henry Domingez. Orogrande placed second and Gone Shoppin placed third.
The final stakes race and most prestigious of the day was Race #10, the $1,365,908 All American Derby-G1. The race was won by Hold Air Hostage (Apollitical Jess-Fols Zookie Cookie, Fols Gold) under Rodrigo Vallejo and trained by Jimmy Padgett II, bred by Luis Miguel Albores Gleason and owned by Darling Farms. One Sweet Racy placed second and Duponte placed third.
After the races were finished, everyone shuttled back to their cars to make the short drive over to the sale barn.
The third day of the Ruidoso Select Yearling Sale's top five sellers brought in $1,010,000 - 3 being colts and 2 fillies.
Hip #340 Famous Strong Eagle - colt (One Famous Eagle-Strength In Numbers) – Consigned by Grant Farms, LLC and purchased by Jose J. and Pedro Aguado Espinosa for $240,000.
Hip #348 One Priceless Eagle - colt (One Famous Eagle-Southern Price) – Consigned by 6666 Ranch, agent for Sam Green and purchased by Paragon Farms, LLC for $210,000.
Hip #376 Strike It Smart - colt (Walk Thru Fire-Jenuine Joy) – Consigned by Burns Ranch and purchased by Bobby D. Cox for $200,000.
Hip #429 Flash And Roll - filly (First Moonflash-Stylish Jess BR) – Consigned by Julianna Hawn Holt and purchased by Scott Bryant for $200,000.
Hip #397 Priceless Policy - filly (Mr Jess Perry-Southern Price) – Consigned by 6666 Ranch, agent for Sam Green and purchased by Paragon Farms for $160,000.
The highest seller of the entire three-day sale still remains Hip #110 A Galaxy Guardian – Colt (Corona Cartel – Higher Fire) - Consigned by Julianna Hawn Holt and was purchased by Judd Kearl for $320,000 on Saturday evening.
Stay tuned to the Speedhorse All American Countdown for Day One, the day we’ve all been waiting for… the All American Futurity!