Ochoa Advances to Texas Classic Derby

Linda Tee Fire sets fastest time in trials for Grade 1 race at Lone Star Park.

October 19, 2012

Fresh off setting American Quarter Horse racing’s all-time earnings mark with a victory in the All American Derby (G1) at Ruidoso Downs, Ochoa overcame a bump at the start and landed in the winner’s circle once again with a victory in the third of five trials for the $400,000-estimated Texas Classic Derby (G1) at Lone Star Park. The final is set for November 10 at the Dallas-area track, and last year's champion 2-year-old and 2-year-old gelding figures to be a heavy favorite.

This marked the first career start for Ochoa away from Ruidoso, and his nose victory over Runaway Wagon was his ninth in 11 starts and increased his record bankroll to $2,604,653 for Brenda and Johnny T.L. Jones Jr.’s  J Bar 7 Ranch, Monte and Katsy Cluck and Doug and Shavon Benson. Regular rider Roy Baldillez piloted the Texas-bred Tres Seis gelding through a 440-yard trip in :21.394 to post the second-fastest qualifying time for trainer C. Dwayne “Sleepy” Gilbreath.

Double Eagle Ranch Inc. & Buena Suerte Equine’s Linda Tee Fire, a daughter of Walk Thru Fire who finished sixth behind Ochoa in the All American Derby, put up the fastest qualifying time of :21.383 with a victory in the first heat. G.R. Carter Jr. rode the Texas-bred for trainer Mike Joiner. Linda Tee Fire also qualified to last year’s Texas Classic Futurity (G1).

Among the other qualifiers are Sooner State Stakes (RG1) winner A Toss Up, two-time stakes winner and Grade 1-placed Texasindependencegal, Grade 1-placed Lethal Volt and The Long Knife, and Grade 3 winner Haulin Candy Salt.

For a complete list of qualifiers, CLICK HERE.