Cesar Dabdoub’s Eyesa Famous Eagle made his first start at Los Alamitos in nearly a year a winning one, as the Texas-bred gelding by One Famous Eagle held off the talented First Tempting Dash by a half-length to win the $35,100 Adequan California Derby Challenge on Friday at Los Alamitos.
Ridden by Cruz Mendez for trainer Jose Flores, Eyesa Famous Eagle had not raced at the Orange County oval since a second place finish in a maiden race on August 24, 2013. The Burnett Ranches LLC-bred runner traveled to Turf Paradise following that race and remained there until his return to Los Alamitos this summer. Eyesa Famous Eagle made eight starts at Turf Paradise and won twice while finishing in the money six times.
Upon his local arrival, Eyesa Famous Eagle posted several works in preparation for this race. The sorrel gelding was sharp at the start and never looked back while posting his third win in 15 outings. He earned $16,497 to raise his career earnings to $48,151. He covered the 400 yards in :19.665. The effort gave Eyesa Famous Eagle a berth in the Adequan Derby Challenge at Prairie Meadows on October 18.
“He’s going to Iowa,” Flores said after the race. “I’m sure Cesar is very excited about this race and we look forward to seeing this horse race at Prairie Meadows. I thought this horse had an excellent chance in this race because he had been training great. I worked him with (2013 Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity finalist) Sis Is Hot on July 12 and stayed right there with her. She’s a very nice filly so I was impressed with how well he worked.”
“He finished strong,” Mendez added. “First Tempting Dash was right there with us, but my horse was up to the task. He’s a very good horse.”
Alberto Valdes’ First Tempting Dash earned $7,020 for his runner-up effort and has now finished in the top two in all four of his career outings. First Tempting Dash is a full brother to champion Tempting Dash and Grade 1 winner A Tempting Dash. Ramon Sanchez piloted the First Down Dash colt for Paul Jones. Inpursuit, Avatarr, Indeed A Delight, Daring Wave, Shaded Secrets, Jess Secrets BR, and El Coqueto Chacon completed the field.