(Auburn, WA) The 2nd day of the big Father’s Day weekend featured the season’s 1st Stakes race of the year the $50,000 Seattle Stakes. It was also day 2 and the 2nd round or preliminary races for the Indian Relay races which will culminte with the Final heats on Sunday. Look for our coverage of the Indian Relay races after the finals are run on Sunday.

Meantime, Alex Cruz remained hot winning the opening 3 races and extended his winning streak to 5 consecutive wins finishing Friday night with 2 wins. Karlo Lopez who had to sit out on Friday for a 1 day suspension got rolling doubling on Saturday to pull within 5 of Cruz.

Let’s get to the Races!

7th Race Feature Race the Seattle Stakes!

Appeal Factor w/Silvio Amador

There were 2 late scratches in the 1st Stakes race of the year leaving a field of 7 going 6 furlongs in the $50,000 Seattle Stakes for 3 year-old fillies. 7-2 Appeal Factor with Silvio Amador broke alertly from the 7 gate and took a 1/2 length lead. 7-1 Special Diva and 21-1 I’m Telling Mom pressed Factor to the 1/4 pole as they set times of 21.60 and 44.01. 9-1 Victoria’s Charge with Juan Gutierrez was hung out wide the entire trip and began to make some progress turning for home and tookover 2nd place as the other pacesetters began to stop.

There was some traffic issues for several which would be looked at after the race but more on that in a moment. 8-5 favorite Paynt Ya Later and Javier Matias got off a step slow and ran into traffic issues heading into the turn where she had to check did get settled and ran hard down the stretch while Rocky Bay Rae and Isaias Enriquez tried to come from last and did close well but in the end no one could match Appeal Factor who won by a length and a half over Victoria’s Charge with Paynt Ya Later 3rd and Rocky Bay Rae 4th.

Appeal Factor is now 3-0 lifetime after a perfect 2-2 in 2023 winning the Angie C Stakes to break her maiden and then the WTBOA Lassies Stakes as a 2 year-old and is owned by Oak Crest Farm and trained by David Martinez. The gray filly is a Kentucky bred by The Factor out of Karula by Colonel John and was bred by the owners Oak Crest Farm. Appeal Factor collected the $27,500 winners share to push her career earnings to $82,500.

The Stewards called an Inquiry and there were jockey and trainer objectionas into the tight racing on the turn but in the end the Stewards could not see any actions they could justify to make any changes and let the original order of finish stand. Appeal Factor paid $9.00, $4.60 and $2.88. the $1 exacta returned $45.14, the 50-cent trifecta $119.20 and the dime superfecta $80.64.

The Connections Winners Circle

The Seattle Stakes Replay

1st Race

After 2 late scratches only 4 broke from the gate going 1 mile and Alex Cruz picked up where he left off with a stalking trip win aboard Outofquemado overtaking 2-1 Arizona Davin and Karlo Lopez in deep stretch to get home 1st in a time of 1:37.89. Odds-on choice Benny Buckets and Carlos Montalvo ran an even 3rd and early speed Street Minister with Silvio Amador faded to 4th at 11-1.

Outofquemado runs for Alex and Vincent Ortega and is trained by Scott Tubbs for his 2nd win of the weekend. With the 2 late scratches there was no show betting but Outofquemado paid $7.52 and $3.38 to place and 2-1 Arizona Davon returned $3.08 on the place. The $1 exacta paid at 6-1 with a return of $7.44.

2nd Race

6 lined up to contest 6 furlings in the 2nd race and 3-2 favorite Arthur Spooner broke well from the 1 hole with Alex Cruz up edged to the lead and then drew away in the stretch to win by 2 lengths. This was Cruz’s 4th straight win and they ran the 3/4’s mile in 1:09.40. Arthur Spooner is owned by Howard Gibson and John Parker and trained by Gibson.

7-2 Pick a Lane Frank with Karlo Lopez ran on to be 2nd, 7-1 Tumac Mountain and Jose Zunino finished 3rd and completing the superfecta was 7-2 Dyf and Kevin Orozco. The Cruz daily double didn’t fool too many paying $7.66 but the 50-cent trifecta paid a decent $36.09 lr in the old days of a $5 minimum exacta bet would have paid $360.90.

3rd Race

Alex Cruz made it 5 in a row with his 3rd straight win on Saturday with a comfortable 3 3/4 length win against 6 others going 5 1/2 furlongs on K R Rules. K R Rules was never far back and took over the lead on the rail halfway around the turn while setting the half mile time of 45.16. 10-1 Barrister Proof with Javier Matias closed well to be a clear 2nd, 14-1 Hez All Smiles and Carlos Montalvo recovered from a tough start and finished with good run to be 3rd and 15-1 Jacob Yen and Kevin Orozco finished 4th.

K R Rules finished in a final time of 1:03.36 and races for R. E. V. Racing and is trained by Frank Liucarelli. The 3-yesr-old gelding is a Washington bred by Harbor the Gold out of Miss Ginger by Giant’s Causeway and was bred by Bar C Racing Stable. K R Rules paid just $3.12 to win and the all Alex Cruz 50-cent pick 3 returned $9.90. The 50-cent trifecta paid $27.77 and the $1 superfecta returned $331.80.

Cruz’s 3rd straight win on Saturday

4th Race

Bonnie Jenne

A field of 9 maiden special weights went 6 1/2 furlongs and the public was a bit baffled in this one the favorite at 3-1 with 6 entries between 3-1 and 7-1. The 2nd choice Dynamic Secret with Juan Gutierrez answered all the questions with an impressive blitzing of this field taking the lead out of the gate and setting all the fractions to the top of the stretch going 22.11  and 43.99. Gutierrez knew the gas tank was full though and let Dynamic Secret open up and boy did he crushing the competition by 4 lengths in a blazing 1:14.72. Dynamic Secret is owned by the Friendship Stable, Q Stable and Craig Frederickson.

7-1 R Barracuda with Isaias Enriquez got by Street Mogul with Neptali Ortiz also 7-1 in the final 50 yards for 2nd and Sir Argento and Leslie Mawing at 17-1 ran a better race than on paper but had traffic issues the entire trip. Dynamic Secret is a Washington bred by Dynamic Impact out of Bay Street Beauty by Harbor the Gold and was bred by Bar C Racing Stables and paid $8.50 to win. The 50-cent trifecta was good for $127.64 and the $1 superfecta $1,023.90.

5th Race

8 ran 6 1/2 furlongs in this one and Torpedo Away launched from dead last to come over the top of all runners in the final 100 yards to win by a half length. Under a perfectly timed ride by Karlo Lopez the 5-2 2nd choice is owned by Hern/LePley Racing and trained by Tim McCanna. The 8 year-old gelding is a Washington bred by Jake La Gold out of Victorys Legacy by Harbor the Gold and was bred by Daniel McCanna.

5-1 Blaze of Dreams ran a solid 2nd with Kevin Krigger up who fought off a tenacious Mr Fireball and Javier Matias at 17-1 while 16-1 Regulation Dazed and Allyssa Morales ran 4th. A big $91.02 50-cent trifecta paid off and a larger $162.04 dime superfecta or $1,620.40 on the $1 bet.

Last to 1st for Karlo Lopez


6th Race

Karlo Lopez came right back with his 2nd win in a complete opposite riding strategy where this time he went gate to wire aboard 7-2 Uncle Juju going 6 furlongs. Lopez and Uncle Juju went straight to the lead and led the other 8 by at least a length all the way around setting fractions of 22.06 and 44.54 and won by a little more than a length in a final time of 1:09.61. James and Diane Hickox and Howie Gibson own Uncle Juju and Gibson trains his 2nd training win of the day.

Simonsito with Luis Reyes ran 2nd at 20-1 in a very game effort while 7-2 Nation of Faith with Alex Cruz took 3rd and 4-1 Fed Grant with Juan Gutierrez ran an even 4th. Simonsito set new highs for the $2 place and show paying $21.20 and $9.30. The $1 trifecta paid a handsome $454.90 and the 10-cent superfecta just missed the $100 mark paying $97.27. 

8th Race

Kevin Orozco

After a late scratch and then a 2nd late scratch at the gate left the field down to 5 in the Saturday finale and Candied Lute sat just off the front speed then opened up inside the quarter pole and did not stop this time winning for jockey Kevin Orozco by 4 1/4 lengths covering the 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:02.77. Candied Lute went off at 5-2 and runs for Horse Haven Creek Farm and trained by Rosie Simkins. 

5-2 Dennard with Alex Cruz closed from far back to grab 2nd, favorite Atomic Candy and Karlo Lopez took 3rd with 7-1 Golden Cowboy and Allyssa Morales 4th and completing the Super High 5 was 5-1 Whos Dallins Daddy and David Martin. The 50-cent pick 5 paid well returning $4,127.80 and the final 50-cent pick 4 paid $284.91.





5th Race
Blaze of Dreams was taken by Horseplayers Racing Club and goes to trainer Scott Tubbs for the claiming price of $8,000
8th Race
Atomic Candy goes to new owners Rancho Viejo & Jerry Carmody and goes to trainer Rigoberto Velasquez for $3,500
Candied Lute is now owned by Harley Kowalski and Sergio Garcia and goes to the barn of Elodio Madrigal for $3,500

News and Notes

Alex Cruz is off to a fast start winning 2 on Friday night and 3 on Saturday. In fact he won all 5 in a row and had taken a 7 win lead over Karlo Lopez but Lopez did strike back getting 2 in the 5th and 6th on Saturday. Juan Gutierrez got another win and is tied for 4th but is far ahead in win percent pushing it to an eye popping 35%.

Tim McCanna

Trainer Howie Gibson got his 1st and 2nd wins of the season on Saturday and Scott Tubbs won one on Saturday for 2 on the week so far. Bonnie Jenne got a nice win her 3rd of the year, Rosie Simkins took the Saturday finale for her 2nd win of the year as did 2nd winningest trainer at Emerald Downs Tim McCanna. Frank Lucarelli is the winningest trainer and got his 9th win trailing leader Blaine Wright by 4.

Owner John Parker has done something we’re not sure he has ever done and that was getting his 2nd win of the year with a different trainer than Candi Cryderman. Parker got his 1st one with Howard Belvoir. Parker tells us he has a long history with the Belvoir’s and a deal came up that he took advantage of and partnered with Belvoir.

On Saturday he co-owns Arthur Spooner with Howie Gibson and Gibson trains. the duo combined to get Parker’s 2nd win with a different trainer. Parker says he has been asked several times over the years to partner with others and has always declined. He says now he’s open to it to help spread around ownership and help some of the other smaller trainers. Parker says Cryderman is and always will be the General of the Parker barn and these partnerships are just taking advantage of some opportunities.


By paulb

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