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© Scott Martinez
LOS ALAMITOS, CA—FEBRUARY 12, 2021—Rosenthal Ranch LLC’s Powerful Favorite will go after his 11th win from his last 15 starts when he leads a strong field of older horses in the Grade 1, $157,750 Brad McKinzie Los Alamitos Winter Championship on Sunday night.
Powerful Favorite will also look to complete the job that he started last year when he finished third in this race as the 4-5 favorite. To be ridden by Eduardo Nicasio for trainer Chris O’Dell, Powerful Favorite is now the 6-5 favorite in his second attempt to win the Brad McKinzie.
A victory in this race would also give the AQHA Supreme Race Horse a total of seven graded stakes victories and third Grade 1 win. He won the Grade 1 Go Man Go Handicap last year and the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Winter Derby in 2019. If he completes the Winter Derby and Winter Championship sweep, Powerful Favorite will join Whosleavingwho and A Stoli Mate as the only Quarter Horses to accomplish this feat in the 21-year history of these races.
“He ran so good (in the trials),” O’Dell said. “We all know he can run. He has to be the barn favorite. He’s just a cool horse.”
A son of Favorite Cartel out of the AQHA Dam of Distinction Remember Me Rose, Powerful Favorite continues to add cash to his bank account. He is less than $5,378 away from reaching the $900,000 mark and a solid 5-year-old campaign could see him reach the $1 million plateau in career earnings in 2021. Powerful Favorite enters with 13 wins in 23 starts.
Brenda Figueroa’s Up For Speed was another star performer on trials night back on January 24. Also sired by Powerful Favorite, Up For Speed was making his first start for the new connections after being purchased privately only a few days earlier from the outstanding stock of AQHA Hall of Fame horseman Ed Allred. Up For Speed was outstanding in his first start for Brenda’s husband, trainer Roman Figueroa, as he won the race a half-length while posting the top qualifying time.
“I did not do much to win this race,” said Figueroa right after the trials. “He was in top shape when he came to my barn. We’re off to a good start with him, but we knew that he was very talented horse.”
Gary and Dee Hoovestal’s Bos Time Machine is the defending Brad McKinzie winner after upsetting the likes of Powerful Favorite at 12-1 odds to win this race last year. The Idaho-bred gelding by Bodacious Dash is 8-1 on the morning line while looking to become only the second horse in the stakes history to successful defend his Winter Championship title. BH Lisas Boy is the only back-to-back winner of this race, crossing the wire first in 2017 and 2018.
Allred’s Doctor Gene, who ran a solid second to Powerful Favorite in the trials, is the 4-1 second choice on the morning line.
The field will also feature First Down Dash Handicap winner Jess Macho Corona, A Ransom Handicap winner Mr Ricks, A Ransom-runner-up Made Over plus Sepertist Dash, Red Hawk Cartel and Pay Me In Front.