It Wasn’t Too Soon For These Two Winners

BY JIM WELLS

A conversation ensued among some of the riders on Wednesday regarding how often a horse would run in times gone by.

One of them remarked at the frequency with which thoroughbreds ran in “the olden days” 75 to 100 years ago.

Every few days, a couple of times a week.

The dialogue began at the mention of two horses running in the stakes races on Wednesday’s card, the Frances Genter and the Victor S Myers, both worth $50,000.

Simran, who ran and won on June 29, was entered against five rivals in the Genter, including the even-money favorite Firstmate. Mr. Jagermeister last ran on June 23 at a mile and was entered against four (reluctant?) others in the Myers as the 1/9 favorite.

Cutting to the chase…..both horses won, Simran by a convincing 1 ¼ lengths, Jagermeister by an even more convincing 6 ¼ without so much as a look at the stick.

Interesting stories accompanied both.

Trainer Roopishwar Rampadarat said afterwards he was not in the least concerned about running Simran back so soon since Leslie Mawing didn’t have to use the horse in his previous outing. Mawing agreed, that he had plenty of horse in reserve at the wire.

For Mawing, the Genter win held other significance. Only 16 years of age at the time, he lost his father, Paul, 28 years ago. And for the past 24 years, Mawing has remembered him by winning a race on July 4, his dad’s birthday.

Wednesday, Mawing and mount  came out of the gate behind Vidira and Cabloosie Bay, and they stayed within striking distance of the leaders. They made their move coming out the turn and cruised past the wire 1 ¼ lengths in front of Vidira with another length on the favorite, Firstmate, finishing in 1:11.30.

The Myers quickly became a one-horse race, not unexpected, and the reason there were only four other horses in the race. Mr. Jagermeister is the best state-bred sprinter on the grounds. He cruised in this one and ran away from the field inside the 16th pole without so much as a slap from Goncalves. Jagermeister ran well back in the Mystic Lake Derby, competing for the first time on the turf and at a mile distance.

All trainer Valorie Lund wanted in this return race was her rider to get the horse a clear, clean trip and, without incident, she expected to win. Now, she will give consideration to Mr. Jagermeister’s next outing, keeping all options open, even the prospect of another go at a mile.

 THE QUARTER HORSES OPEN THE SHOW

Times change. Monarchies rise and fall, fiefdoms give way over time to assembly lines and sometimes, if we’re lucky, income keeps pace with the price of a horse.

Take the North Star Derby, run as part of the first quarter horse racing at Canterbury Downs in 1986.

The Derby drew a 12-horse field that included a four-horse and a two-horse entry (under the guide lines of the time) for the 400-yard race on September 5, 1986.

The purse was $7,000.

Fast forward to Wednesday afternoon and the two races that opened the card, the Canterbury Park Distaff at 400 yards and the Bank of America Championship Challenge, at 440 yards.  The first race was worth $34,740 and the second, $49,410.

Corona Springs claimed the opening race under Cristian Esqueda for the Jason Olmstead barn. Corona had a ½ length on Gold Diggin Queen and Clark Chase and another head on Glen Ellyn and Nik Goodwin in a winning time of 19.76.

Young Ryder Olmstead, holding the winning belt buckle for his father, Jason, the winning trainer, proclaimed that he himself would be wearing it in the not distant future.

A bump at the start may have done in the favorite in the Championship Challenge, Ajs High at 4/5. Yett Kowboy Jim’s (4-1) steady run proved good enough to reach the wire ¾ length in front of Damn Strait, with another neck back to Bout Tree Fiddy.

The win had financial benefits on several levels for Dean Frey, since he is the owner, trainer and breeder of the horse.  “That’s pretty sweet,” he said. “I just love this horse to death. He gives 100 percent every time he runs.”

Winning rider Nakia Ramirez was joined in the winner’s circle by her five-year-old daughter Jewell, who may at some point join young Ryder Olmstead in the buckle wearing fraternity.

“It’s a beautiful buckle,” said Ramirez. “I was so fortunate to have Jewell here to see this race. I just might let her wear it.”

Canterbury Quarters Make Nat’l Impact

It’s that time of year: in a matter of hours, the starting gate will open for the first time in 2012. The athletes file into the barns, the track is groomed, and the staff makes last-minute preparations. After a long and quiet winter, the air sizzles with anticipation. Canterbury Park is alive.

The start of a new season brings new possibilities and challenges. Two-year-olds make their debuts, statebreds continue campaigns over their home track, and stakes winners prepare to defend their titles. This year, one group in particular has something to prove: the quarter horses.

Quarter Horses have long been a part of Canterbury’s racing history, but are not as well known as the thoroughbreds. However, quarter horse racing at Canterbury is competitive on a regional and national level. Horses ship in from Remington Park, arguably the top quarter horse track in the country, and leave to compete against the best at Prairie Meadows, Los Alamitos, Hialeah Park, Sunland Park, and Ruidoso Downs.

In 2011, we watched Jess a Runner (pictured above) win the Great Lakes Stakes; his time of 21.126 shattered the previous track record for 440 yards. One of the top older horses in the country, Jess a Runner placed third in the 2011 Challenge Championship at Los Alamitos, a race that is the quarter horse equivalent of the Breeders’ Cup Classic.

Cruzin the Wagon crossed the wire first in the $64,000 Northlands Futurity during his 4-race win streak last summer. He followed that victory with another in the Grade III Valley Junction Futurity at Prairie Meadows. Back in training this spring, he finished first in the Oklahoma Derby and placed second in the Remington Park Derby.

I Am That Hero won the $28,900 Canterbury Park Derby last summer. He went on to win the Grade III Altoona Derby at Prairie Meadows and joined allowance competition in the challenging New Mexico circuit.

Currently, Jess a Runner and Cruzin the Wagon are in the Top 20 horses for 2012 in the AQHA National Rankings. Will we witness new champions in the making this year?

This will be your inside track to the quarter horse world here at Canterbury Park. If you’re not familiar with the sport, this is the perfect opportunity to learn and profit as we preview stakes and break down races with handicapping angles that are unique to the quarters.

There is nothing more exciting than a quarter horse race, and there is a lot of money on the table for those who learn to bet one. Quarter horse racing is what American racing is all about: speed. Watch a race from the rail this summer and you’ll understand the excitement of a field of horses charging down the track at speeds of 40 mph or more. Dirt flies in the air and the ground shakes… at least, it feels that way if you’re holding the winning ticket for that longshot that just hit the wire first.

Good luck this summer, and may the odds be ever in your favor.

This blog was written by AQHA Q-Racing Ace Jen Perkins. Jen travels to tracks across the country to educate fans about handicapping and Quarter Horse racing, and will share her perspective on Canterbury Quarter Horse racing as well as insider information on America’s fastest athletes.

Canterbury Quarters Make Nat’l Impact

It’s that time of year: in a matter of hours, the starting gate will open for the first time in 2012. The athletes file into the barns, the track is groomed, and the staff makes last-minute preparations. After a long and quiet winter, the air sizzles with anticipation. Canterbury Park is alive.

The start of a new season brings new possibilities and challenges. Two-year-olds make their debuts, statebreds continue campaigns over their home track, and stakes winners prepare to defend their titles. This year, one group in particular has something to prove: the quarter horses.

Quarter Horses have long been a part of Canterbury’s racing history, but are not as well known as the thoroughbreds. However, quarter horse racing at Canterbury is competitive on a regional and national level. Horses ship in from Remington Park, arguably the top quarter horse track in the country, and leave to compete against the best at Prairie Meadows, Los Alamitos, Hialeah Park, Sunland Park, and Ruidoso Downs.

In 2011, we watched Jess a Runner (pictured above) win the Great Lakes Stakes; his time of 21.126 shattered the previous track record for 440 yards. One of the top older horses in the country, Jess a Runner placed third in the 2011 Challenge Championship at Los Alamitos, a race that is the quarter horse equivalent of the Breeders’ Cup Classic.

Cruzin the Wagon crossed the wire first in the $64,000 Northlands Futurity during his 4-race win streak last summer. He followed that victory with another in the Grade III Valley Junction Futurity at Prairie Meadows. Back in training this spring, he finished first in the Oklahoma Derby and placed second in the Remington Park Derby.

I Am That Hero won the $28,900 Canterbury Park Derby last summer. He went on to win the Grade III Altoona Derby at Prairie Meadows and joined allowance competition in the challenging New Mexico circuit.

Currently, Jess a Runner and Cruzin the Wagon are in the Top 20 horses for 2012 in the AQHA National Rankings. Will we witness new champions in the making this year?

This will be your inside track to the quarter horse world here at Canterbury Park. If you’re not familiar with the sport, this is the perfect opportunity to learn and profit as we preview stakes and break down races with handicapping angles that are unique to the quarters.

There is nothing more exciting than a quarter horse race, and there is a lot of money on the table for those who learn to bet one. Quarter horse racing is what American racing is all about: speed. Watch a race from the rail this summer and you’ll understand the excitement of a field of horses charging down the track at speeds of 40 mph or more. Dirt flies in the air and the ground shakes… at least, it feels that way if you’re holding the winning ticket for that longshot that just hit the wire first.

Good luck this summer, and may the odds be ever in your favor.

This blog was written by AQHA Q-Racing Ace Jen Perkins. Jen travels to tracks across the country to educate fans about handicapping and Quarter Horse racing, and will share her perspective on Canterbury Quarter Horse racing as well as insider information on America’s fastest athletes.