LARC NEWS Posted: 1/24/2021 12:41:22 AM


        Dutch Masters III’s Flash Bak was one of only two Quarter Horses to qualify the Grade 1 All American Futurity and Grade 1 Los Alamitos Two Milllion Futurity last year. In his first start of 2021, the homebred son of Moonin The Eagle showed once again that he remains one of the top Quarter Horses in the nation after posting the fastest qualifying time to the Grade 1, $203,950 Los Alamitos Winter Derby here on Saturday night.

          Ridden by Oscar Peinado for trainer Jaime Gomez, Flash Bak (left) was slow leaving the gate, but he flew late on the way to winning the fourth of five Winter Derby trials by ¾ lengths in a time of :20.026 over a wet fast track, just slightly faster than impressive trial two winner Monopolist, who covered the distance in :20.041.

          Bred by Dr. James Streelman of Dutch Masters III and Bill Dale, Flash Bak ran lights out when posting a second-place finish to Apollitical Patty in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity. He was eighth in the Grade 1 All American Futurity. Apollitical Gold, the AQHA champion 2-year-old gelding, was the only other horse to compete in the All American and Two Million, which are Quarter Horse racing’s two richest race, last year.

          “This horse loves distance,” Gomez said of Flash Bak. “He’s doing excellent and when it comes to distance, he’s one of the best horses out there. We knew we had a special horse when we sent him to Ruidoso Downs trials. That’s why he went. He should have qualified to the Ed Burke Million Futurity last year. After the All American, he came back and ran a heck of a race in the Two Million trials. He ran an greater race in the final. The filly, Apollitical Patty, was just to fast and quick on that night. Flash Bak came back outstanding after the race. He’s super sound. He’s great right now.”

          Flash Bak’s strong campaign provided Dr. Streelman with a lot of joy in 2020.

          “It lifted him,” Gomez said. “Doc will have eight 2-year-olds this year. This horse really raised his spirits. I’ve had at least one for Dr. Streelman every single year since I started training for him almost 30 years ago. Bob Baffert trained for Dutch Masters III and then it was Carlos Lopez. When he was partners with Denny Boer, I had about 50 horses for them in a single year. He loves the sport and has been so loyal to me for so many years. I’m so happy to train a horse like Flash Bak for Dr. Streelman.”

          Trainer James Glenn Jr. is surely thrilled to train a horse like Monopolist for Hall of Fame owner Ed Allred. The Favorite Cartel gelding won the Grade 2 PCQHRA Breeders Futurity last year and was the second fastest qualifier to the Two Million last year. He broke through the gate prior to the start of the Two Million, but then ran a solid race on the way to finish in fourth place. With Oscar Andrade, Jr. up, Monopolist trailed in his Winter Derby by ¾ lengths to Holiday Handicap winner Candy Blood. That was during the first half of the race. The second half of the race was all Monopolist, as the Allred-bred flew down the straightaway to sail past Candy Blood in route to a super impressive length victory.

          Prior to the start, one of the horses in this trial broke through the gate before being brought to reload. The slight delay did not affect Monopolist much and in fact it appears that it only made him gain greater focus according to his connection.

          “That horse broke through and (Monopolist) hesitated but also relaxed rather than get tense,” Glenn said. “Oscar said (Candy Blood) was gone but as soon as Monopolist caught his stride, he knew he had the horse underneath him to catch him. He has a heck of a finishing gear.”

          If only Monopolist could have enjoyed a perfect race on Two Million night instead of breaking through the gate.

          “When he broke through the gate (in the Two Million), that really cost us,” Glenn added. “It cost him mentally. It is just racing luck and that is just the way it goes. If you line them up and they all have a perfect break, obviously things are different.”

          While Flash Bak has won four of eight starts, Monopolist has four wins in nine outings. The two standouts on derby trials night will headline the field in the Grade 1 Winter Derby final on Saturday, February 13.

          Bred by Abigail Kawananakoa, AP A Special Takeoff pulled away with each stride to win his trial by 1 ½ lengths while tying for the third fastest time of :20.118 for Kawananakoa and Adan Paredes. AP A Special Takeoff gave Cooper his 1,501st Quarter Horse win at Los Alamitos and his first since reaching the 1,500-win milestone with Apollitical Pence in the Champion of Champions. Juan Pablo Leon rode the son of Favorite Cartel to his biggest win yet.

          Legacy Ranch’s homebred Twostrikesurprise shared the honor of being the third fastest qualifier after covering the 400 yards in :20.118 when second to Flash Bak. Ridden by Eduardo Nicasio for trainer Terry Knight, Twostrikesurprise came into this race after finishing in a big way to win an allowance event on December 18. The Winter Derby will be his first ever start in a stakes race.

          Chris Sutton’s CM Dillingham Advice, the daylight winner of the Wild West Futurity, posted the fifth fastest time of :20.144 after winning the final trial of the night. The Oregon-bred gelding by Best Advice lugged out steadily throughout this race, but he was able to hold off Allred’s Gentleman Chuck by a neck. The Willoughby-trained Gentleman Chuck finished with the sixth fastest time and was followed in the top 10 list of qualifiers by the stakes placed gelding Coronado Kiss, Last Chance Dash Handicap winner Leah Carroll, Heritage Place Futurity finalist and Holiday winner Candy Blood, and Two Million finalist Doc Lamb.

          Here are the qualifying time for the 10 Winter Derby finalists: Flash Bak (20.026), Monopolist (:20.041), AP A Special Takeoff (:20.118), Twostrikesurprise (:20.118), CM Dillingham Advice (:20.144), Gentleman Chuck (20.176), Coronado Kiss (:20.188), Leah Carroll (:20.190), Candy Blood (:20.218), and Doc Lamb (:20.220).


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