Challenge


Daycruiser Wins First Stakes Victory By Three Lengths in the AQHA Youth Racing Experience Stakes
Daycruiser, ridden by Bobby Dow, wins the $35,750 AQHA Youth Racing Experience Stakes by three lengths.

Dustin Orona Photography
Daycruiser Wins First Stakes Victory By Three Lengths in the AQHA Youth Racing Experience Stakes

GRANDE PRAIRIE, TEXAS–OCTOBER 21, 2023–Five three-year-old and upward horses kicked off the first stakes race of ten for the Challenge Championship night at Lone Star Park. Daycruiser was the first stakes victor of the evening to visit the winner's circle in the $35,750 AQHA Youth Racing Experience Stakes.

With jockey Bobby Dow controlling the reins, Daycruiser broke from the gates in second place. By first call, the son of Favorite Cartel was already in the lead by two lengths and crossed the wire three-length ahead of Hi High Hopes. 

The Texas-bred gelding clocked an 89 speed index in :46.309 seconds around the 870-yard distance race. Daycruiser's impressive victory paid $6.60 to win on 9-5 odds. Trained by James J. Gonzales, III, the distance race was the five-year-old Texas-bred's first stakes win and the $18,590 winner's share of the purse increased his earnings to $72,105.

The winning connections of Day Cruiser accept the AQHA Youth Racing Experience Stakes trophy at Lone Star Park.
© Dustin Orona Photography

Breeder Cade Burns sold Daycrusier for $32,000 in the 2019 Ruidoso Select Yearling Sale. The five-year-old gelding out of Sereni Tea Rose by First Down Dash is currently owned by Joe Johnson.

Runner-up Hi High Hopes, ridden by Ricky Ramirez, ran a game second. The six-time stakes finalist by Favorite Cartel has four career wins with $109,825 in the bank. 

Trainer Bradley Bolen saddled Hi High Hopes for owner Cole Clinger. Bred by Paul C. Jones in California, the five-year-old horse is out of Brighterthanthesun by Stel Corona.

El Bee Dee, piloted by Claudio Aguilar, had a minor setback but rallied up just missing for third a neck behind Hi High Hopes. The five-time winning son of A Dashing Valentine was a finalist in four stakes races and has $80,442 in career earnings.

Trainer Jonathan Castaneda conditioned El Bee Dee for owner Dora Nelly Zamarron. The five-year-old gelding was bred in Texas by Denver Nicholas out of the Northern No Trump mare El Bee Bluegrassms. 

Cjs Rockhard N Ready and Eye Will Decide rounded out the five horse field's order of finish.