The Los Angeles County Fair’s race meeting, one of the few in the country that has shown steady growth in recent years, will begin its 18-day run today at Fairplex Park in Pomona.
Last year, the fair averaged 14,713 in daily attendance, an increase of 9% over 1984. Betting averaged $2.5 million, a gain of 15.7%
Although the fair’s schedule emphasizes thoroughbreds--today’s card, starting at 12:30 p.m., has nine thoroughbred races, two for quarter horses and one for Appaloosas--the star of the meeting could well be an Appaloosa. Blowing Easy, a 3-year-old colt, has already won two $100,000 races in Northern California and is being prepared to run here Sept. 28, closing day, in the $20,000 Silver and Gold Invitational Handicap.
Blowing Easy has already been timed in :50 3/5 for 4 1/2 furlongs. The thoroughbred record for that distance is :50 2/5. The Silver and Gold is a six-furlong stake for 3-year-olds and older.
Today’s feature for thoroughbreds is the $30,000 Foothill Stakes. Also on the program is the $15,000 Express Stakes for quarter horses. There will be at least one stakes race each day for 18 straight days, the purses totaling almost $3 million. There are two $100,000 races for thoroughbreds--the Pomona Derby Sept. 27 and the Pomona Invitational Handicap Sept. 28--and on Sept. 21, the track will run the $200,000 Breeders Futurity for 2-year-old quarter horses.
One of the starters in the Foothill is El Corazon, who had trouble winning in California but was a double winner recently at Sportsman’s Park near Chicago.
There is bound to be a new jockey champion at the fair, since Ron Hansen, who won the title four straight years, is skipping this year’s meet.