LARC NEWS Posted: 1/13/2018 12:50:56 AM

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     Ricardo Guillen is off to a tremendous start with his stable, as the trainer has picked up six Quarter Horse wins during the first six racing nights of the new season. His winners this season include Zendaya, a mare that gave Guillen his first stakes win at Los Alamitos when taking the Long Beach Handicap. The talented mare won her 2018 debut at juicy 10-1 odds on January 7.

“I was hoping to get her in the Charger Bar Handicap on that night, but she didn’t get in,” Guillen said. “We got in this race and it worked out nicely.”  

On Friday night, Guillen picked up two more wins, first with Single N Rare, a horse owned by Juan Jose Cisneros ridden by Alberto Zepeda that won the fifth race at 7-2 odds. His second winner of the night came with Maria Mendez’s California-bred Oak Ranch, a winner of 7-1 odds, in the evening’s sixth race.  Guillen spent nearly 8 years in the navy, hence the anchor centered on the back of his silks. His love for Quarter Horses came at an early age, as he enjoyed occasional recreational riding with his family.

“I heard that horses were great for therapeutic purposes and when I got out of the military it was hard to adjust to normal, relaxed environment without having to answer, or be on call, or be on time, or be on duty, or just be ready for something,” Guillen said. “I got into the rodeo scene and started going to charreadas with my family. Little by little I bought my first horse. I went to train with John Cortez and Scott Craigmyle at Santa Anita for two to three years and it just took off.”

Zendaya was his first big star.

“When we first claimed her, we knew she was a closer and had a lot of potential,” Guillen said. “She ran second in the Fresno Futurity and then ran in a $20,000 claimers against the boys. She ran a nice race. She’s been a lot of fun. She’s come a long way.”

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