LARC NEWS Posted: 12/22/2022 2:52:48 PM



     Jose Flores, the third all-time leading trainer at Los Alamitos Race Course, won the first Quarter Horse training title of his career after saddling 58 winners from 372 starters this year. For Flores, winning the title was highly rewarding after more than 20 years working towards achieving the goal.

      “First of all, I have to thank all my clients,” Flores said. “I am so thankful to have the opportunity to train for people like the Meneelys, Johnny Trotter, Juan Moya, Robyn Gordon, and so many others. Vince Genco, who has always been so supportive of me, there are so many great people that have helped, and without them none of this is possible. I must thank my team because I am no one without them. The jockeys that have helped me throughout the year, like Cruz Mendez, Erasmo Gasca, Irving Lara, Jairo Rangel, etc. They work hard every single day and show up to the barn always ready to help the team improve and get better each day.”  

      Flores, whose record includes two Champion of Champions wins and two Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity wins, has perennially ranked in the top three in the Quarter Horse trainer standings. His 1,547 Quarter Horse wins place him only behind Blane Schvaneveldt and Paul Jones in the all-time list here.

       “I’m very proud and so happy to have won the title, mainly because it came against this great group of trainers stabled at Los Alamitos,” Flores added. “I have tremendous respect for the Quarter Horse trainers I compete against because I feel we have the best group of them in the country. I’ve finished in the top three something 17 or 18 times during my career.  It’s an honor to be the leader and to do it against this trainer colony trainers make it even more worthwhile. I have a lot of respect for my fellow trainers, but we are rivals when our horses facing each other on the track.”

      Flores is only the seventh different trainer to lead the Quarter Horse standings here since 1990, but this marks the fourth year in a row in which a different trainer has won the title. Jaime Gomez won the crown last year following Scott Willoughby in 2020 and Chris O’Dell in 2019.  

      “I must thank Dr. Ed Allred as well because of everything that he does for Los Alamitos Race Course. He keeps this place going and does so much to support the Quarter Horse racing industry. Los Alamitos is my home. This is where I started my career and I want to be here forever. My father has been here with me from the start and of course my wife and children, who have always been there to lift me up after I’ve had a rough day at the track. There are so many people involved to help you accomplish something like this. I am blessed and very thankful.”

       Willoughby finished second in the 2022 standings with 51 wins with Monty Arrossa completing the top three with 44 wins. Arrossa defended his title in earnings with $1,765.884.

       Ed Allred won the Quarter Horse owner title after picking up 69 wins from 416 starters, while EG High Desert Farms was Jeryl Hartley tied for second place with 14 wins each. Campaigning Grade 1 winners Cyber Attack and Bomb Cyclone, Rosenthal Ranch led Quarter Horse owners in earnings with $1,466,893.

       Jesus Rios Ayala garnered his fifth Quarter Horse riding title in the last six years after winning 65 races. Armando Cervantes finished second with 60 wins, while Henry Reynoso Lopez completed the top three with 46 wins. For the second straight year, Eduardo Nicasio led all Quarter Horse riders in earnings with $1,776,008.

     In the Thoroughbred standings, Ricardo Ramirez won his first riding title in only his second full year on the saddle. Ramirez won 32 races, edging last year’s co-leading rider Edgar Payeras by three wins. Reynoso Lopez finished third with 15 wins. Ramirez also led the standing in Mixed-breed races with 55 wins. Payeras was second in that category as well with 49 wins. Francisco Orduna Rojas was third with 26 wins.  

      Like Ramirez, trainer Jesus Uranga won the Thoroughbred title and the Mixed-breed title.  For Uranga, this was his second Thoroughbred training title with 18 wins, only one more than Angela Aquino’s 17 wins. Sergio Morfin was third with 16. Uranga won the Mixed-breed division with 36 wins and was followed by Morfin with 22 and Milton Pineda with 19. Uranga also finished as the co-leading owner in Mixed-breed races, sharing the title with owner David Hinkins. They each won 13 races.

       Uranga completed a grand slam of titles, as he was the leading Thoroughbred owner with 10 wins followed by Ashley Garcia with 8. Silvia Soto, 4 Hares Racing and Gilberto Verduzco tied for third place with seven wins each.

       The 73rd  year of racing at Los Alamitos will open on New Year’s Eve on Saturday, December 31st with the running of the Holiday Handicap for Quarter Horse juveniles.  The first Grade 1 stakes race of the meet is set for Sunday, January 1 with the running of the Charger Bar Handicap for mares ages 4 and up. Live racing will be conducted on a Saturday and Sunday night basis. For more info, please contact 714-820-2690.     



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