While champion Moonistlooks like the best older horse at Los Alamitos right now, Ed Allred’s Quirkylooks like the best aged mare on the ground after posting her third stakesvictory in a row on Saturday at the Orange County oval.
Ridden by Carlos Huerta for trainer James Glenn, Jr., the4-year-old Quirky outdueled a nice group of fillies and mares to win the$25,000 Ivan Ashment Handicap by ¾ lengths in a time of :19.875. The StelCorona filly was making her first start since winning the Grade 2 Charger BarHandicap on January 4. In her final start of 2014, Quirky won the Grade 1Southern California Derby on December 21. Three races and three stakes wins forthe sorrel filly.
“She’s at the peak of her game right now,” jockey CarlosHuerta said. “Girls Can Fly flew out of the gate and had us by ¾ lengths rightafter the first jump. I’ve ridden Girls Can Fly before so I know how quick shecan be. Quirky broke well, but Girls Can Fly just blew us away early on. Itried not to get desperate right away, but I wanted to make sure Quirky gotgoing. I went to the whip left handed a couple of times and when she switchedleads she took off. I knew at 250, 300 yards that we had them. She’s just toostrong right now.”
“It was luck of the draw that I got a chance to trainQuirky,” Glenn added. “She was this red little filly that came to the barn andshe’s just matured into a wonderful mare. The thing about Doc Allred’s horsesis that the pedigree in their families is so deep that every one of them can bea runner. Quirky has turned out to be quite a runner.
“Girls Can Fly opened up on us and I was worried,” thetrainer added. “She was a little hotter than usual, but she acts like that whenit’s her first start after a break. It takes a little time for her to settlein. It does seem like she’s one of the top 2 or 3 mares here. We’ll point herto the Matron Stakes on California Breeders Champions Night (on July 25).”
The trainer also noted that after Quirky won the ChargerBar, she spent some time in the breeding shed.
“They got two embryos out of her by Walk Thru Fire,”Glenn said. “We’re excited about that.”
Quirky earned $13,750 for the win to take her lifetimeearnings over the quarter of a million dollar mark. She’s earned $250,098 withfive wins from 12 career starts.
And what about a Moonist vs. Quirky matchup down theline.
“That would be a dream matchup,” Huerta said. “Moonist isthe best right. He looks unstoppable, but Quirky looks good. She felt verystrong tonight, especially since she had not raced in a while. I was surprisedhow great she ran. Moonist against Quirky, it would be great race. Hopefully itcan happen later in the year.”
Marta Winslow’s Bring Me Home ran a solid race from gateto wire to finish second in the Ivan Ashment. Ridden by Minor Arana, Bring MeHome finished only a neck behind Quirky while earning $5,625 for her runner-upeffort. Like Quirky, Bring Me Home is a 4-year-old by Stel Corona. Her previoustop races include a second place finish to Girls Can Fly in the Irvine Handicapand fifth place finish in the Miss Princess Handicap. A veteran of 22-careerstarts, Bring Me Home came into this race after running second againstallowance foes on May 31. Allred’s Girls Can Fly held on for third place andwas followed by Chalalita, Forgotten Dynasty and Ima Foose.