Triple Crown Bids Unlikely for Ruidoso Stars

PJ Chick In Black and Executive Menace are unlikely for Rainbow races.

By Greg Thompson
June 13, 2012

PJ Chick In Black

PJ Chick In Black. PHOTO: Ruidoso Downs

The connections of both the Grade 1 Ruidoso Futurity and Ruidoso Derby winners confirmed that there is little chance of seeing a Quarter Horse complete either side of the Ruidoso Quarter Horse triple crown.

Ruidoso Futurity winner PJ Chick In Black repaid her owners the $15,000 supplemental fee that was required to enter the trials for the $600,000 futurity at Ruidoso Downs by overcoming a poor start, and rallying with a late charge to win the event.

With the win, the 2-year-old daughter of Desirio earned $300,000 for her owners Fredda Draper, and Denny Bowen. With all of the media circus surrounding the Thoroughbred triple crown chase this year, the connections of PJ Chick In Black were asked if it is possible that the Carl Draper trainee would attempt the second leg of the three futurities this summer.

“It is highly unlikely that we will come back with her in the Rainbow Futurity trials,” said owner Fredda Draper. “She came back really well from the race, much better than we had expected. Fillies have a tendency to be more effected than the boys after a race. Some of them won’t eat for a few days, and really need more time to recover. She is seemingly back to her self and feeling really well. But we’re going to take the same path as we took with Heartswideopen, and wait to run her in the All American Futurity trials, just like she did after winning the Ruidiso Futurity in 2007.”

Ruidoso Derby winner Executive Brass was also a $25,000 supplemental nominee that returned a hefty $285,267 return on investment with the win in the 400 yard dash. The 3-year-old son of Executive Menace, out of a Relagate (TB) mare named Entrust held off a late closing Dashing Vike with jockey Jesse Levario aboard to hold on for the win.

The victory came at the hands of both the 2011 All American Futurity (G1) winner Ochoa, and the 2011 Rainbow Futurity (G1) winner Feature Mr Bojangles. Ochoa was fractious in the gate prior to the field being sent on their way, and broke poorly to finish ninth. Feature Mr Bojangles had a rough trip in the Derby, and finished in fifth place. With the next leg of the Ruidoso 3-year-old triple crown trials looming in three weeks, winning trainer James J. Gonazles,II was asked about the possibility of a venture towards one of racings toughest accomplishments.

“As much as I’d like to try him in the Rainbow Derby I just think it would be best if we save him for the All American,” said Gonzales. “He came out of the race well, and is a very sound horse, but I want to come into the trials of the All American Derby with a fresh horse. You only get one chance at it, and I don’t want to go into August with a tired horse.”

Ruidoso Downs will be hosting the Rainbow Futurity trials on Tuesday July 3rd, followed up by the Rainbow Derby trials on Wednesday July 4th. The Rainbow Futurity has an estimated purse of $700,000, while the  Rainbow Derby is estimated at $1 million.