‘Runaway Makes the Grade

Ocean Runaway, the 7-5 favorite, earned his second Grade I win of 2004 with a decisive victory in the $1-million Golden State Futurity on Sunday night at Los Alamitos.

Owned by Gary Muller, who had never had a starter in a $1-million race, and trained by Dennis Ekins, the 2-year-old gray son of First Down Dash drove under Alex Bautista to beat Like Frankie And Me, the 7-2 second choice, and eight others for his third win in eight starts.

Earlier this year, Ocean Runaway, who was bred in California by Lucas Racing LLC, won the Governor’s Cup Futurity at 5-1. He completed the 400 yards in a stakes-record 19.42 seconds.

“This is wonderful,” said Ekins, who had won a Grade I -- the Ford Challenge Championship -- at Sam Houston with Dash On A Mission the night before.


“He came out of the gate real well tonight and when he did that, I thought he had a great opportunity to win.”

Court Etiquette, a 24-1 shot who raced coupled in the wagering with Dutch Schultz, finished third and Get Down Perry was fourth.