Preview Racing

Governor's Cup Derby And Futurity Trials Night On Saturday
Exploiter heads the lineup of 36 juveniles entered into Saturday's $275,000 Governor's Cup Futurity trials at Los Alamitos

Los Alamitos
Governor's Cup Derby And Futurity Trials Night On Saturday

LOS ALAMITOS, CA–JULY 4, 2024–Trials to the $275,000 Governor’s Cup Futurity and the $170,000 Governor’s Cup Derby for California breds will highlight the 8-race program of the Saturday evening card at Los Alamitos. Five trials to the Governor’s Cup Futurity will be contested as races two through six, while a pair of trials to the Governor’s Cup Derby will be held as races seven and eight.  

The Governor’s Cup Futurity trials will feature 36 juveniles, of which 10 have already visited the winner’s circle. The lineup will be headed by Antonio Diaz’s Exploiter, who raced in the Grade 2 Robert Adair Kindergarten Futurity, as well as Ed Allred’s impressive maiden winners Call Her Perfect and Listen Now and CD Horses, Inc.’s CD Favorite Lady.        

The Scott Willoughby trainee Call Her Perfect is one of the headliners in race two, which is the opening trial of the night. The Favorite Cartel filly finished strongly when running second in her career debut before living up to her name with a 2 1/2 length victory in a fast 300-yard clocking of :15.55 on June 1.  

The field for the opening trial will also include Dunn Ranch’s Party Time Tom, a full brother to recent Grade 1 Ed Burke Million Futurity winner Up To Party. The siblings were taught their first lessons at Dunn Ranch in Oklahoma before being sent to trainer Monty Arrossa’s barn at Los Alamitos. The training reports from Oklahoma listed Party Time Tom as the better of the siblings, but Arrossa quickly realized that it was Up To Party who was the more advanced of the two. Perhaps Party Time Tom just needs some time to develop, and this trial will serve as the first opportunity for the Kiddy Up gelding to begin closing the gap between him and his sister. Party Time Top will start from post five in this trial.                

The Jaime Gomez-trained Exploiter will headline race three while still searching for her first victory. The filly ran second to fastest qualifier Fear N Fridays in their Kindergarten trial and then showed good early speed before settling for sixth in the final. Exploiter ran third in a trial to the Ed Burke Million in her last start. The Quarter Company LLC’s Man Of Five, second in both of his career starts and Barry Woodhouse’s recent maiden winner, Fast Moving Wildfire, also figure to contend.

The next trial features eight maidens, but Alexis Andrade’s Hot Ones stands out after a strong finish when running second to Grade 1 finalist Big Hurt in their Ed Burke Million trial. A colt by Favorite Cartel, Hot Ones was second to the aforementioned Listen Now in his racing debut.                       

The three winners in race five, which is the fourth trial, are EG High Desert Farms’ Favorite Jesshawk, out of the Grade 1 stakes-placed mare Jess Hawk, Allred’s Quick She Is, out of the stakes-winning Thoroughbred mare Miss Loujean, and Boardshorts Breeding and Racing, LLC’s Open Book, who posted a hard-fought nose victory in her racing debut.                       

The final trial will feature the Fly Thru The Fire gelding Listen Now, who posted a scintillating maiden win by 1 3/4 lengths on May 11. The gelding broke sharply and dominated from there, pulling away farther ahead with every stride over a field that included Hot Ones.              

This field will also feature Reliance Ranches LLC’s Snow Bound, a winner in his first start at odds of 24-1. The Favorite Cartel colt is a half-brother to multiple Grade 1 winner BH Lisas Boy. CD Favorite Lady, who posted a length victory in her last start, will also be in action in this trial.

The Governor’s Cup Derby trials will feature 16 runners, of which 10 already have the experience of racing in a graded futurity or derby. The list included Mike Casselman’s You See That (right), who won the Governor’s Cup Futurity last year, and Kolleen Ledgerwood’s Wilde Thing, who was the runner-up to You See That In the Governor’s Cup Futurity last year.                                                                                      

Other top names include Grade 1 Los Alamitos Two Million and Grade 1 Los Alamitos Oaks finalist Checkn Cartel, Oaks finalist Market Analyst and four-time grade stakes finalist Optical Illusion, and Grade 1 Los Alamitos Winter Derby finalist Boardwalk.                               

The horses with the top 10 times in the futurity and derby trials will advance to the finals, which will be held here on Saturday, July 27.