Hello, my name is John Cherwa and welcome back to our horse racing newsletter as we look at more stewards’ rulings.
Los Alamitos cranks up with its three-week, 12-day meet. It’s the L.A. County Fair Meet. I don’t know about you but I love to ride the Ferris Wheel overlooking everything and the roller coaster that goes to the Katella Deli and back.
What? No fair?
Oh yeah, that’s right. This is one of those Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim deals.
Well, it’s important to note that fair meets have different mutuel handle percentages. For example, on win, place and show it goes from 15.43% to 16.77%. Exactas and doubles go from 22.68% and 24.02%. The rest of the exotics, except one, goes from 23.68% to 25.02%. There is a 50-cent Players’ Pick 5 that is only 14%.
Of course, there is no turf course at Los Alamitos and no graded stakes races this meeting.
This Saturday there is the $75,000 Beverly J. Lewis Stakes for 3-year-old fillies going six furlongs and the $75,000 E.B. Johnston Stakes for Cal-breds going a mile. Next weekend is the $100,000 Barretts Debutante on Sat., Sept. 15 for 2-year-old fillies that were bought at a Barretts sale going 6 ½ furlongs. On Sun., Sept. 16, is the new $100,000 Los Alamitos Special for horses going 1 ¼ miles.
On Sat., Sept. 22 there will be the $100,000 Barretts Juvenile for colts and gelding that were also bought at the Barretts sale. It’s 6 ½ furlongs.
We’re going to do the stewards’ rulings in two parts. One today and one tomorrow. We’ll start with the week of Aug. 21-26.
--Jockey Drayden Van Dyke was fined $100 for using the riding crop more than three times in a row without waiting for Triple Shot to respond in the fourth race on Aug. 19. The horse won the race. Van Dyke admitted responsibility.
--Jockey Tyler Gaffalione was suspended for three days for his ride on Fly to Mars on Aug. 19. It was ruled he altered course without enough clearance causing interference. Fly to Mars was disqualified from second to third. He served those days Aug. 29, 30 and 31. He was also fined $100 for using his riding crop more than three times. It was a unanimous decision by the stewards.
--Exercise rider Benjamin M. Monnier was fined $50 for galloping a horse during a worker only period. He said he was wrong and it wouldn’t happen again.
--Jockey Assael Espinoza was fined $100 for using his riding crop on Aug. 22 more than three times without waiting for his mount, Ike Walker, to respond. Espinoza admitted he used the crop four times. Ike Walker finished third in a four-horse race.
--Jockey Brayan Pena was fined $100 for use of his crop more than three times on Shirl’s Ready on Aug. 25. The horse finished second. Pena admitted to using the crop more than allowed.
--Jockey Kent Desormeaux was fined $200 for using the riding crop more than three times without waiting for a response. It was the second offense in the past 60 days. (Desormeaux was later suspended three days for not riding this horse to the finish.)
--Jockey Assael Espinoza was fined $300 for over using his riding crop when his mount Fantastic Chloe was out of contention on Aug. 25. The horse finished 10th of 11 horses. Espinoza could not give an explanation for his actions.
The stewards also issue traffic violations. There is no elaboration. (Seems like this could be someone else’s problem.)
--Agent Ricky Agarie was fined $10.
--Exercise rider Nery Cano was fined $10.
--Stable employee Carlos Lopez was fined $10.
--Stable foreman Antonio Orantes was fined $10.
--Stable employee Vidal Cano was fined $10.
--Trainer Val Brinkerhoff was fined $10.
--Jockey Lidio Barrientos was fined $10.
--Vendor Don Lockwood was fined $10.
Now, some bigger fines…
--Stable employee Ezequiel Garcia was fined $20.
--Stable employee Gerson Mendez was fined $20.
--Exercise rider Sal Morfin was fined $20.
--Stable employee Alfonso Valente was fined $20.
--Exercise rider Jacinto Munoz was fined $35.
--Stable employee Peighton Hall was fined $10 for a dog violation. (Not sure what that was about but hope the dog is OK.)
Los Alamitos preview
Opening day is pretty typical for a Thursday at Los Alamitos with eight races starting at 1 p.m. (We don’t miss those 2 p.m. Del Mar starts, for sure.) There are two allowance/optional claimers, to maiden special weights and four claimers.
The feature is the fourth, an allowance with horses going six furlongs. Aristocratic is the 8-5 favorite for trainer
The second favorite is Street Vision at 2-1. He runs for Joe Herrick and Martin Pedroza. He’s three for five this year, winning an allowance at Belmont Park and two claimers at Santa Anita. He’s six for 20 lifetime.
Here are the field sizes, in order: 6, 6, 6, 5, 8, 7, 9, 10.
Jose Contreras LRC play of the day
THIRD RACE: No. 2 Sunrise Royale (3-1)
He broke fast, dueled early, settled mid-pack and then made a four-wide move around the turn to get up for the win in the final strides. The second-place finisher Coco Kisses was one of the favorites in that race she finished over three lengths clear of the third place runner. I like the improvement that Sunrise Royale showed last time out and this long stretch drive should be up for her liking. Heriberto Figueroa had a nice season riding this track in July and he will be looking to start the season on a good note.
Jose Contreras is an excellent handicapper and well known on social media and familiar to racing fans watching on TVG. You can follow him on Twitter at @losponies or check him out at his website.
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And now the stars of the show, Thursday’s entries.
Los Alamitos Race Course Entries for Thursday, September 6.
Los Alamitos Race Course, Los Alamitos, California. 1st day of a 12-day meet.
1 Mile. Purse: $15,000. Maiden Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Prices $20,000-$18,000.
|1||Copper Cowgirl||Brice Blanc||120||Patricia Harrington||5-1||20,000|
|2||Exes N Ohs||Joseph Talamo||120||9-5||20,000|
|3||Take Charge Gal||Assael Espinoza||115||John W. Sadler||8-5||20,000|
|4||Solar Corona||Vinnie Bednar||122||Jose Hernandez, Jr.||5-1||18,000|
|5||Cheyenne Dancer||Heriberto Figueroa||117||Joe Herrick||10-1||18,000|
|6||Curlina Curlina||Martin Pedroza||122||Mike Harrington||8-1||18,000|
6 Furlongs. Purse: $40,000. Maiden Special Weight. 3 year olds and up.
|1||Goldie's Hills||Barrington Harvey||124||Louis A. Bradvica||8-1|
|2||Justin's Quest||Edwin Maldonado||120||Richard Baltas||5-2|
|3||Dre Dan||Joseph Talamo||124||Bob Baffert||9-5|
|5||Exultation||Tyler Conner||120||Peter Eurton||6-1|
|6||Boiler Plate||Brayan Pena||120||Scott Rollins||8-1|
5½ Furlongs. Purse: $45,000. Allowance Optional Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Price $20,000. State bred.
|1||Alpenhorn||Eulices Gomez||124||Peter Eurton||4-1||20,000|
|2||Sunrise Royale||Heriberto Figueroa||115||J. Eric Kruljac||3-1|
|3||Lady Krishna||Vinnie Bednar||122||Marcia Stortz||10-1|
|4||Magicalchic||Edgar Payeras||117||Louis A. Bradvica||15-1|
|5||Hailey Rachele||Tiago Pereira||122||Sam J. Scolamieri||9-5|
|6||Happy Issue||Assael Espinoza||117||Vann Belvoir||5-2|
6 Furlongs. Purse: $48,000. Allowance Optional Claiming. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Price $62,500.
|1||Stylistics United||Edgar Payeras||117||Louis A. Bradvica||20-1|
|2||Lombo||Martin Garcia||118||Philip D'Amato||4-1|
|3||Street Vision||Martin Pedroza||122||Joe Herrick||2-1|
|4||Aristocratic||Heriberto Figueroa||117||Peter Miller||8-5|
|5||Conqueror||Joseph Talamo||122||Vladimir Cerin||5-2|
5½ Furlongs. Purse: $21,000. Maiden Claiming. 2 year olds. Claiming Prices $50,000-$40,000. State bred.
|1||Street Punk||Chris Russell||122||Robert A. Bean||20-1||50,000|
|2||Calder Vale||Ruben Fuentes||122||Ricardo Zamora||5-1||50,000|
|3||Kid Koil||Martin Pedroza||118||Adam Kitchingman||2-1||40,000|
|4||Bean Street||Barrington Harvey||122||Robert A. Bean||20-1||50,000|
|5||Lifesbeengoodsofar||Tiago Pereira||122||Michael Machowsky||4-1||50,000|
|6||New Salute||Heriberto Figueroa||113||Ruben Gomez||20-1||40,000|
|7||Forestation||Efrain Hernandez||122||J. Eric Kruljac||5-1||50,000|
|8||Just Hit Play||Santiago Gonzalez||122||Steven Miyadi||5-2||50,000|
1 Mile. Purse: $40,000. Maiden Special Weight. 2 year olds.
|1||Dinesen||Martin Garcia||122||Philip D'Amato||3-1|
|2||Herdsman||Alonso Quinonez||122||Dan Blacker||20-1|
|3||Rain Crow||Stewart Elliott||122||Dan Blacker||20-1|
|4||Earnest||Tiago Pereira||122||O. J. Jauregui||6-1|
|5||Dark Prince||Joseph Talamo||122||Bob Baffert||2-1|
|6||Magnificent McCool||122||Doug F. O'Neill||5-2|
|7||Seven Scents||Geovanni Franco||122||Craig Anthony Lewis||4-1|
5½ Furlongs. Purse: $12,000. Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Price $6,250.
|1||Stately Command||Efrain Hernandez||124||Jesus Nunez||20-1||6,250|
|2||Bella Raquella||Edgar Orozco||124||Jesus Nunez||15-1||6,250|
|3||Nazareth||Tiago Pereira||124||Molly J. Pearson||6-1||6,250|
|4||Blooming Hannah||Barrington Harvey||124||Robert A. Bean||15-1||6,250|
|5||Kristie's Heart||Heriberto Figueroa||119||Anthony K. Saavedra||5-2||6,250|
|6||Scathing||Santiago Gonzalez||124||James A. Davis, III||6-1||6,250|
|7||Brayan Pena||124||Raymond C. Bryner||6-1||6,250|
|8||Rockantharos||Ruben Fuentes||124||Antonio Garcia||5-1||6,250|
|9||Princess Areni||Martin Pedroza||120||Simon Callaghan||3-1||6,250|
5½ Furlongs. Purse: $17,000. Claiming. Fillies and Mares. 3 year olds and up. Claiming Prices $16,000-$14,000.
|1||Topaz Time||Ruben Fuentes||124||Paul G. Aguirre||4-1||16,000|
|2||Coalinga Hills||Santiago Gonzalez||124||Martin F. Jones||7-2||16,000|
|3||Majestic Authority||Franklin Ceballos||120||Sal Gonzalez||12-1||16,000|
|4||Creative Spark||Tiago Pereira||120||Daniel Dunham||12-1||16,000|
|5||Ciao Luna||Heriberto Figueroa||115||Steve Knapp||8-1||16,000|
|6||Dashin Ashen||Evin Roman||124||Carlos Cruz Lopez||8-1||16,000|
|7||Sharona Sunset||Erick Garcia||120||Marcia Stortz||6-1||16,000|
|8||Lady's War Dress||Juan Sanchez||124||Bobby Wayne Grayson||20-1||16,000|
|9||Jeweled||Assael Espinoza||119||John W. Sadler||3-1||16,000|
|10||Fellina||Edgar Payeras||117||Bobby Wayne Grayson||20-1||14,000|