Juan Humberto Moya’s Amber Bock became the first two-time stakes winner of the season after posting a relatively easy victory in the $15,000 Santa Ana Handicap at 100 yards on Friday at Los Alamitos.
Leaving the gate from post number two, Amber Bock was tremendous in this 100-yard dash, as showed off his ability to explode out of the gate on the way to a neck victory over Cypress Handicap winner Unchangeable in a :6.50 hand timed clocking. Amber Bock’s first stakes win of the season came in the Separatist Handicap on March 1.
“He’s got a lot of power,” trainer Jose Flores said. “We’ll look for another handicap race to run Amber Bock.”
Bred by Steve Burns and Carroll Hooper, Amber Bock was ridden to victory by the meet’s leading rider Cruz Mendez.
“I like the 100-yard races because it’s action right from the start,” Mendez said. “You just have to go all out and it’s fun. My horse broke out a little bit, but he came really strong and was able to hold off the other nice horses in this race.”
Amber Bock earned $8,250 for the win to take his lifetime earnings to $36,039. This was his fourth win in 11 career starts.
Ron and Ronnie Keller’s Unchangeable earned $3,375 for running second, while Ariel Navarro’s Larana 09 finished third. Durio, Barrel Babe, Eyesa Lil Shiva, and Boogie Woogie Walk completed the field.
The action included a pair of races for 2-year-olds highlighted by EG High Desert Farms’ Walk Thru Crystal (photo above), a Walk Thru Fire filly which scored an easy 1 ½ length victory in her racing debut on Friday. Ridden by Alejandro Luna for trainer Yanet Rodriguez, Walk Thru Crystal covered the 300 yards in a time of :15.370. Her winning time was easily the fastest clocking by a 2-year-old this season.
“I’m happy about her race,” said owner Enrique Gonzalez. “There was a big tailwind that helped her final clocking so I don’t want to get too excited about her time, but she ran a nice race. My other horse, Marko Czech, ran second in this race so it was a good race for us. I’m pleased with how our team is doing and I’m looking forward to a good year.”
Gonzalez added that Walk Thru Crystal is eligible to run in the Kindergarten Futurity, a race that the owner has won before with the likes of champion Hawkish and former track record holder Dash To The End. Walk Thru Crystal is a full sister to both Crystal Sola, who ran in the 2009 Los Alamitos Two Million, and to Captain Planet, who ran in last year’s PCQHRA Breeders Futurity. Crystal Sola was also the winner of the 2009 John Deere Oklahoma Juvenile Challenge, runner-up in the 2010 Remington Park Derby and a finalist to that year’s Heritage Place Derby.
In the evening’s other race for 2-year-olds, trainer Jaime Gomez and jockey Carlos Huerta teamed up for another victory thanks to Bobby Cox’s Carnegie Haul. Gomez and Huerta joined forces to win the El Primero Del Ano and La Primera Del Ano derbies last weekend and they now have a nice Kindergarten hopeful with Carnegie Haul. The Corona Cartel colt won the 220-yard race in a time of :15.804 with no wind to aid his final clocking. Gomez also saddled runner-up Over Limits for owners Dutch Masters III.