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Los Al Cards Final Derby Trials of Meet

Southern California Derby trials draw 33 runners looking to get into Grade 1 final.

November 30, 2013

Double Bar S Ranch’s Scoop Of Sunshine, the winner of the Governor’s Cup Derby (RG2) earlier this year, is among the 33 talented sophomores that will compete in the 400-yard trials to the $160,850 Southern California Derby (G1) on Sunday at Los Alamitos.

Four trials have been carded as part of the nine-race program with the horses with the 10 fastest times advancing to the derby final on closing night on Sunday, December 22. Scoop Of Sunshine is one of 21 sophomores competing in the trials with previous major stakes final experience. Trained by Paul Jones, the First Down Dash filly will be in action in the fourth and final trial on the card while hoping to qualify to her third major derby of the year. In addition to winning the Governor’s Cup Derby, Scoop Of Sunshine also finished fourth to multiple Grade 1 winner Matabari in the $953,000 Los Alamitos Super Derby (G1). Scoop Of Sunshine also competed in last year’s $1,118,000 Golden State Million Futurity (G1). As usual, Cesar De Alba will ride the Double Bar S Ranch-bred filly. She’ll start from post number two.

There are several other major stakes finalists facing Scoop Of Sunshine in this trial. Arnold Gonzalez’s Fires Blazin was fifth in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Winter Derby earlier this year and a 2-year-old he ran in the Grade 1 Ed Burke Million, Golden State Million and Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity. He’ll start from post number sixth in this heat.

The final trial will also feature the highly accomplished Sugarbear Sax Man, the winner of the Autumn Handicap last season and a finalist in races like the Kindergarten Futurity (G2), El Primero Del Ano Derby (G2) and PCQHRA Breeders’ Derby (G3). Jose Flores will saddle Fires Blazin and Sugarbear Sax Man. Splenda LLC’s Joy Roses Eagle, who ran fourth in the Grade 1 Golden State Derby on August 25, is another top sprinter competing in the fourth trial.

The trial action will kick-off with eighth sophomores taking on each other in the evening’s sixth race. The lineup of stakes finalists in this trial is headed by Robert K. Gentry, Robert A. Gentry and Robbi Force’s Scatmandu, the impressive runner-up in the Super Derby final. Trained by Juan Aleman and ridden by Cruz Mendez, Scatmandu won his Super Derby trial by a half-length and then finished only a neck behind Matabari at 27-1 odds in the Super Derby finale. He’ll start from post number two in this heat. Other top runners include 2012 Kindergarten Futurity winner Blackberry Czech, Super Derby finalist Henoshersecret, Golden State Million Futurity and Winter Derby finalist Gold Flames On Fire and John Deere Stakes winner All Out Arrogant.

Vessels Stallion Farm LLC’s Tres Coronas Mas is one of the top names participating in the third trial. The Tres Seis gelding finished third to Champion of Champions (G1) finalist Significant Heart in the PCQHRA Breeders’ Derby and like Fires Blazin, Scoop Of Sunshine and Gold Flames On Fire, he was part of the Golden State Million Futurity last season. Cody Joiner, who also trains All Out Arrogant, will saddle Tres Coronas Mas. Raul Valenzuela will ride. This trial will also feature another graduate of last year’s Golden State Million in the form of Bingo, who races for Salvador Pimienta. Bingo is a stablemate of the previously mentioned winner Blackberry Czech. Super Derby finalist Lavish Susan and Golden State Derby finalist Jabuti Eagle SA will also race in this trial.

Trial number three (race number eight) will be headed by J. Garvan Kelly and Nancy Yearsley’s Nellie Delaney, the third place finisher in this year’s $125,000 Los Alamitos Maiden Stakes and also a finalist in last year’s $700,000 Rainbow Futurity (G1). She was troubled fifth in a Super Derby trial last season. PCQHRA Breeders’ Derby finalists Look Whos Running, Ill Be A Dasher and Fast Moving Fire will also take part in this event. Also owned by Double Bar S Ranch, Look Whos Running ran second in the PCQHRA Breeders Derby’ on October 4. Governor’s Cup Derby finalist Jewel First Cat SA, multiple stakes finalist Blistering Speed and 2012 Kindergarten finalist Mama Mia Bella will also race in this trial.