Bannister (left), Oh So Fancy Fancy and the still undefeated Henry Craig each won their respective trials to the $118,000 Wild West Futurity on the way to finishing as the three fastest qualifiers to the Sunday, October 23 final to be held at Los Alamitos.
Denny and Sandy Weigt’s Bannister also posted the fastest qualifying time to the John Deere California Juvenile Challenge back on August 6. The J. Garvan Kelly and Nancy Yearsley owned runner then finished third in the final, but he returned with a tremendously dominant winning effort in the second of three Wild West trials at 350 yards. Ridden by Tony Guymon for trainer Monty Arrossa, Bannister won his trial by 2 ¼ lengths while covering the distance in the fastest qualifying time of :17.599. He has now won five of seven career starts. He previously won the $69,000 Beehive Futurity on May 20.
Jere Brinkerhoff’s Oh So Fancy Fancy won the third and final trial in a time of :17.764 to post the second fastest qualifying time. Ridden by Jesus Canales, Oh So Fancy Fancy made her previous two starts in Elko, where she finished second in the $40,000 Intermountain Futurity. The One Sweet Jess filly has won three of six career outings.
Trained by Hector Magallanes for Cedar Creek Tree Farm Ranch and Racing, Henry Craig will put his perfect record on the line in the Wild West final. The Oregon-bred gelding also by One Sweet Jess has now been the winner of all five of his career starts. He previously won the Pot O’ Gold Futurity at Sun Downs and the Firecracker Futurity at Grants Pass. Eulices Gomez rode Henry Craig, which recorded a hard-fought head victory over Brinkerhoff’s Buckshot Cartel in the opening trial. Bred by Cedar Creek Tree Farm, Henry Craig won his trial in a time of :17.811.
The complete list of qualifiers is as follows: Bannister (:17.599), Oh So Fancy Fancy (:17.764), Henry Craig (:17.811), Buckshot Cartel (:17.824), Queen Of The Kartel (:17.834), Bos On Time (:17.839), Ktmakinataxreturn (:17.93), Alegendinmytime (:17.937), Jess Klas (:17.939) and Stellur (:17.970).
In order to be eligible to participate in the Wild West trials horses had to have made at least two starts in tracks in either the Intermountain or Northwest regions plus Canada, Nevada or Arizona.