Hez Our Secret, Cold Cash 123 Headline Directors Trials

Race gives final berth to Champion of Champions.

Q-Racing Journal
November 21, 2013

Champions Hez Our Secret and Cold Cash 123 are among the seven horses racing for a berth in the $750,000 Champion of Champions (G1) when they start in the $15,000 Z. Wayne Griffin Directors Trial at 400 yards on Saturday night at Los Alamitos.

Currently, only the winner will receive a Champion of Champions invitation. If additional spots in the 440-yard Champion of Champions become available, they will be filled from horses in the Directors Trial in time – and therefore finish – order.

Johnny Trotter’s Hez Our Secret (First Down Dash-Secret Separation by Separatist) is trying to follow the same path as he did last year into the Champion of Champions. As a 3-year-old, he won his Directors Trial and then finished fourth in the Champion of Champions.

Hez Our Secret, the 2012 champion 3-year-old colt, also raced to second-place finishes in the All American Derby (G1) and the Los Alamitos Super Derby (G1).

The Trey Wood-trained earner of $855,051 was third in the $171,300 Los Alamitos Winter Championship (G1) in February. He came back this fall to finish seventh in the $100,000 Go Man Go Handicap (G1) and then second behind all-time leading money earner Ochoa in the $150,000 Robert L. Boniface Los Alamitos Championship (G1).

T-Bill Stables’ homebred Cold Cash 123 (Oak Tree Special-Hot Cash 123 by Takin On The Cash) tries to regain the form that earned him the 2011 world champion title.

Cold Cash 123 has been on a path to reach the Champion of Champions throughout his 5-year-old campaign this year. He won the $101,340 Bank of America Remington Championship Challenge (G2), which earned him a spot in the $350,000 Bank of America Challenge Championship (G1).

After his Bank of America Remington Championship Challenge win, the Sleepy Gilbreath-trained gelding was seventh in the $250,000 Remington Park Invitational (G1) on June 1 and then came back in September to finish a troubled eighth in the Go Man Go.

Cold Cash 123 made a run for a Champion of Champions berth at his favorite distance of 440 yards in the Bank of America Challenge Championship, his latest start on November 9. The earner of $1.3 million was respected as the 9-5 favorite and had a clear path from the outside position. He made his well-known late charge, however came up a neck short of longshot Vodka With Ice. Therefore, he must race in the Directors Trial to try and gain a Champion of Champions starting spot.

Abigail Kawananakoa’s Significant Heart (Corona Cartel-Jess Significant by Mr Jess Perry) is on a roll since winning her maiden back in May. Trainer Paul Jones immediately moved the 3-year-old filly up to the stakes division and she responded with a three-quarter-length victory in the $16,000 Lanty’s Jet Handicap. After finishing third in her PCQHRA Derby trial, she came back to win the Grade 3, $168,500 derby by a half length at 16-1 odds.

Valeriano Racing Stables LLC’s Jess Lips (Mr Jess Perry-Loose Lips by First Down Dash) could be dangerous after a making a late run to finish third in the Los Alamitos Championship behind Ochoa and Hez Our Secret. Earlier this year, the 4-year-old won an optional-claiming race and was a close third in the $100,000 Leo Stakes (G1) at Remington Park.