LARC NEWS Posted: 7/14/2018 11:16:48 PM


          With a strong string of horses headed by graded futurity finalists Powerful Favorite and Tac Me Up, trainer Chris O’Dell appeared to be in a great position heading into the trials to the $380,000 Governor’s Cup Futurity on Saturday at Los Alamitos.

Halfway through the night, O’Dell’s Quarter Horse contingent had already delivered many strong performances, none better than Parsons Family Limited Partnership’s Parsons Rocket (photo), a homebred gelding who posted the evening’s fastest clocking of :17.587 in the fourth of sixth heats. Ridden by Cody Jensen, Parsons Rocket outdueled Powerful Favorite, who came into the trials after running in the Grade 1 Ed Burke Million Futurity.

“We ran first in a couple of races and also had some seconds,” O’Dell said. “We’re pretty happy with that. The night started a little rough. I had a couple that I thought would do well (earlier in the night), but we sat patient and things came around. This horse (Parsons Rocket) is a Cody Jensen special. He cruises on the outside, he likes to be hand-rode and with not too much pressure. He just needs someone to sit cool and not get too excited. Right out of the gate you just let him get his stride and Cody is good at that. Nicasio is good at that too. He won on him too, but Nicasio had to pick one or the other (he picked Powerful Favorite). When I got a chance to get Cody and Parsons Rocket drew the outside, I thought that was a good spot.

“You get (Parsons Rocket) in between horses and gets bumped around then he gets pretty timid. I tell you what, he beat a pretty good horse because that Powerful Favorite is a runner.”

Parsons Rocket is by Parsons Rock and out of Terrific Energy, who over the past few years here has had several major winners at Los Alamitos. Terrific Energy is the dam of current top aged mare Thermonuclear Energy, the winner of the 2017 Grade 3 Las Damas Handicap and 2018 Ivan Ashment Handicap. She was second to Kiddy Up Cowgirl in the Grade 1 Charger Bar Handicap earlier this season.

Rosenthal Ranch’s Powerful Favorite finished with the second fastest time with a clocking of :17.597 for jockey Eduardo Nicasio and O’Dell. In the trials to the Ed Burke, the son of Favorite Cartel had a similar result, as he was second to fastest qualifier SC Money Maker on that night. O’Dell had another 1-2 finish in the third trial, as he qualified Ruth Barbour, Colten O’Dell and Wendy O’Dell’s Tac Me Up and Rosenthal Ranch’s Jess Bein Me. Tac Me Up won the heat in a time of :17.756. The son of Kiddy Up finished sixth in the Grade 2 Robert Adair Kindergarten Futurity in his previous outing. O’Dell’s fifth qualifier of the night came courtesy of Parsons Ranch’s Favorite Wise Lady, who is now a perfect two for two after Cody Jensen piloted her to victory and the sixth fastest time of :17.734. The Favorite Cartel filly is a half-sister to the outstanding A Political Lady, who is a perfect five for five in 2018.

The stallion Favorite Cartel will also be represented by Shannon Demler, Howard Nichols and Thompson Racing, Inc’s Provodnikov in the Governor’s Cup final. The gelding out of 2006 All American Derby winner Separate Tac won for the first time in three career starts in the trials. Ridden by Jesus Rios Ayala for trainer Paul Jones, Provodnikov finished with the third fastest time of :17.687.

Juan Carlos Chavez’s Striver is now a three-time futurity finalist after posting the fourth fastest time following his second-place finish to Provodnikov in the opening trial. The Foose filly was second in the Kindergarten final and also competed in the Ed Burke Million final. The complete list of qualifiers is as follows; Parsons Rocket (:17.687), Powerful Favorite (:17.597). Provodnikov (:17.687), Striver (:17.702), Hot Little Kiddy (:17.733), Favorite Wise Lady (:17.734), Tac Me Up (:17.756), You Caught My Eye (:17.769), Anas Image (:17.783), and Jess Bein Me (:17.788).



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