By Brian W. Spencer —-
NEW ORLEANS (December 6, 2017) – Scrivener Stables’ Trust Factor appears to be the standout in a field of nine Louisiana-breds in the 27th running of the $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Turf, which will be run on Saturday Dec. 9 at a distance of 1 1/16 miles on the Stall-Wilson Turf Course.
Trained by Mike Maker, the 4-year-old son of Paddy O’Prado will be ridden by Robby Albarado and breaks from post four as the 8-5 morning line favorite. Trust Factor has shown quite a bit of consistency throughout his career and has only finished out of the money twice in 13 starts but this year earned his lone stakes victory in Louisiana Downs’ Louisiana Legends Turf Stakes on July 17. His other two wins this year came in open company allowance events on the turf, one of which was this April over the Fair Grounds lawn. Two starts ago, he defeated graded stakes placed Bondurant and Revved Up at Keeneland.
Tigertail Ranch’s Fort Pulaski, the 3-1 second-choice, will likely be Trust Factor’s biggest competition as the son of Any Given Saturday defeated the morning line favorite last out in the Mr. Sulu Stakes on Opening Day by a half-length. In that race, the Danny Pish trainee snapped an 11-race losing streak. Prior to his triumph on Opening Day, Fort Pulaski last found the winner’s circle at Delta Downs in October 2016. Fort Pulaski will be ridden Jose Valdivia, Jr. who guided the horse to victory last time out.
Breaking from post eight, Harbor Pilot will be making his stakes debut on Saturday as a 15-1 longshot. Owned by Red Rose Racing, the 4-year-old son of Trappe Shot made his turf debut a winning one last out defeating fellow Louisiana Champions Day Turf aspirant Who Datawaki at Fair Grounds. The Scott Gelner trainee was claimed from trainer Ron Faucheux in July of this year and has not missed the board in five starts since.
Rounding out the field (with jockey and odds): Hail to the Nile (Corey Lanerie, 10-1), Jack Snipe’s (Florent Geroux, 12-1), Gentlmans Agrement (Colby Hernandez, 8-1), Impressive Student (Jamie Theriot, 15-1), Extra Credit (Shaun Bridgmohan, 5-1)
Other highlights on a 13-race card that features 11 stakes worth $1.1 million include:
Town and Country Racing LLC’s My Miss Chiff puts an undefeated record over the Fair Grounds main track on the line as the 9-5 favorite in the 12th running of the $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Ladies Sprint, run at a distance of six furlongs.
Trained by Al Stall, Jr, the daughter of Into Mischief broke her maiden in January, doing so in superb fashion over the New Orleans oval by 6 lengths, which she then followed with an allowance victory by 7¾ lengths back in March. Her next two starts were massive steps up in class against graded stakes company. Stall sent My Miss Chiff to Keeneland for the Grade II Beaumont back in April where she was a well-beaten fifth behind Sweet Loretta. The following month, she took another shot against such caliber fillies in Pimlico’s Grade III Miss Preakness Stakes which resulted in a third-place finish behind multiple graded stakes winner Vertical Oak. Since then her lone start was a 1¼-length victory on Opening Day’s Happy Ticket Stakes where she defeated last year’s Louisiana Ladies Sprint one-two finishers Wheatfield (Florent Geroux) and Sunny Oak (Corey Lanerie) who also are entered in this year’s event.
Dr. Liz (Chantal Sutherland, 50-1), Discreetly Grand (James Graham, 20-1), Play Unified (Miguel Mena, 20-1), Bitsy’s C C (Ashley Broussard, 15-1), Elektracutioner (Jose Valdivia, Jr., 12-1), Fairwell Tax Break (Gabriel Saez, 20-1) and Look Into My Eyes (Robby Albarado, 6-1) complete the field.
Trainer Brad Cox will send out Inveniam Viam and Dontmesswithjoanne, a respective first and third in Fair Grounds Race Course and Slots’ Si Cima last out, for the 27th running $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Ladies, a 1 1/16-mile event on the grass.
Breaking from the five post as the 5-2 morning line favorite, Allied Racing Stables LLC’s Inveniam Viam was a winner of the Si Cima on Opening Day last time out and will be in search of her fifth victory over the Stall-Wilson Turf Course. Earlier in the year, the daughter of Half Ours won four in a row, which included a victory in the Ellis Park Turf back in July at its namesake track. That winning streak was put to an end when she finished third in the Louisiana Cup Turf at Louisiana Downs on Aug. 5. Shaun Bridgmohan has the mount.
Breaking just to the outside of Inveniam Viam is stable mate Dontmesswithjoanne. The Zayat Stables LLC-owned daughter of Pioneerof the Nile was third out as the favorite in the Si Cima, but finished 2¼ lengths behind her stablemate. Dontmesswithjoanne also has two open company wins under her belt. She won her career debut over Churchill Downs’ Matt Winn Turf Course by 5¾ lengths as a 2-year-old and picked up another victory over the Kentucky lawn in September in a non-winners of two allowance event. Florent Geroux was aboard for both of Dontmesswithjoanne’s wins and will return to the irons.
Rounding out the field (with jockey and odds): Mr. Al’s Gal (Diego Saenz, 4-1), Seaside Candy (Colby Hernandez, 8-1), Pera (Chantal Sutherland, 15-1), Safari Calamari (Jose Valdivia, Jr. 8-1), Tenpins Tempo (Ashley Broussard, 20-1), Calamity Jane (Miguel Mena, 10-1), Pacific Pink (Corey Lanerie, 10-1)
Trainer Al Stall, Jr. will have representation with a pair of fillies by Louisiana legend Star Guitar in the $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Lassie with stakes placed Andthebandplayedon and Minit To Stardom.
Owned by Stewart Madison, Andthebandplayedon won her career debut at Evangeline Downs in July but was a close second last time out behind Feisty Embrace as the heavy favorite in a state-bred allowance race on Opening Day. Prior to her narrow runner-up effort, she was second in the Evangeline Downs Princess behind She’s Our Fastest. She will be ridden by Corey Lanerie in the six furlong event.
Stall’s other daughter of Star Guitar in the Lassie is Minit To Stardom, a Brittlyn Stables Inc.-owned filly who broke her maiden by an emphatic 5¼ lengths on Opening Day in her lone start. Colby Hernandez guided Minit To Stardom in her victory and will return to the saddle for Saturday’s race.
Cool Spring (Florent Geroux, 8-1), Girls Life (Ashley Broussard, 8-1), Sarah’s Holy Belle (Chantal Sutherland, 8-1), Yes Gorgeous (Jose Valdivia, Jr., 4-1), Just a Bandit (Kerwin Clark, 10-1), She’screative (Jansen Melancon, 10-1).
T M Ranch’s Heza Louisiana Dash leads a field of ten for the 27th running of the Grade II $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Quarter Horse Classic, run at 400 yards. The son of Heza Fast Dash was narrowly beaten in last year’s edition of this race by two-time victor Open Me A Corona. This year the Kenneth Roberts-trainee has added a trio of stakes triumphs at Delta Downs to his resume but was beaten by fellow Quarter Horse Classic aspirant Ldn Jessasaltydog in Evangeline Downs’ Opelousas Stakes in November.
Completing the field are Absolute Shot, Running Game Patriot, Heza Bell Perry, Ww Showtime, Jes a Fast Dasher, Super Sonic Patriot, Strong Guns and My Favorite Blue.
Rosendo Valdez’s Toast to Virginia is the lukewarm 9-2 morning line favorite in a field of a dozen for the 27th running of the $100,000 Grade II Louisiana Champions Derby run at 400 yards. Trained by his owner, the son of Taylors Toastin Papa will look to make it three in a row and comes off a pair of two 300-yard victories at Evangeline Downs. His main completion will likely come from stablemate Shatto Stoli, who is the only horse in the field that boasts both a victory at the distance and at Fair Grounds.
Buds World, Jess A Little Star, Royal Quick Patriot, Nd Super Long Pass, Don’t Kill Patriot, Fabulously Fast Game, Di Maria, Coronaoro, Fast Dashin Dee and Gt Runway Date round out the field.
Rogelio Marquez, Jr.’s Dashnunder Afullmoon is out for redemption in Saturday’s Louisiana Champions Day Quarter Horse Juvenile. Previously trained by Jose Sanchez, the son of Heza Fast Dash started off his career at a spotless 4-for-4, but his undefeated career came to halt when he stretched out to 400 yards and finished a close third last out at Evangeline Downs.
Miss Tee Lajolla, Jls Dashin Fire, Eyesa Game, Yumyumcomegetyousome, Sha Boo Yah, Piloto Shiner, Second Down Leaving, Blue Eyed Fance, Cos I Get It, Fabulously Black and Jrs Natural Runway complete the field.
About Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots
Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, the nation’s third-oldest racetrack, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, LA, Fair Grounds is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN); it also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and 11 off-track betting parlors throughout southeast Louisiana. The 146th Thoroughbred Racing Season – highlighted by the 105thrunning of the Louisiana Derby – will run from November 18, 2017 through March 31, 2018. More information can be found online at www.FairGroundsRaceCourse.com.