LARC NEWS Posted: 10/24/2015 12:56:31 AM


Owned and bred by John Erickson, Wilmas Alright Now led from start to finish while holding off The Midnite Caller by a half-length to win the $16,000 John Ward Handicap on Friday at Los Alamitos.

Bred in Idaho, the 4-year-old gelding Wilmas Alright Now has close ties to California.

“Both her mother and father were purchased out of the PCQHRA Sale at Los Alamitos many years ago,” Erickson said. “I bought Wilmas Alright Now’s mother, Wilma The Wizard, about 12 years ago for a fellow I know, but he didn’t want her because she cost $100 more than he wanted to pay. I ended up keeping her. Im Alright Now was purchased by my neighbor. We ended up breeding the two of them to come up with Wilmas Alright Now."

Erickson has owned Quarter Horse his entire life, but racehorses for the past decade or so.

“I bought racehorses because I wanted to improve the speed of my Quarter Horses,” he said. “I have three sons and they all rope. We’re into roping, but we have some racehorses as well.”

Wilmas Alright Now has done well for his owner. The bay gelding has now won 10 of 17 career starts following his convincing win in the John Ward. A winner at Los Alamitos during his 2-year-old campaign,  Wilmas Alright Now was fourth in last year’s Blane Schvaneveldt Handicap and the runner-up as the 5-2 favorite in this year’s Schvaneveldt running.

“If he’s not pulling and tugging on the pony then you know something is wrong with him,” Erickson said. “On the night of the Blane Schvaneveldt (on October 2) he had his head down as he was being led on to the track. The next morning he came up with a temperature of 104 degrees. He was probably not feeling good the night before, but he still ran second. He came up with a chip in the Schvaneveldt last year, but he still ran fourth that night. That’s shows you that he’s a tough horse with a big heart. He always gives you his everything. He ran a great race tonight. We’ll probably leave him here for one more start.”

Ridden by Cruz Mendez for trainer Bret Vickery, Wilmas Alright Now earned $8,800 in the John Ward to $59,385. He covered the 400 yards in :19.951.

Owned and trained by Adriana Aceves, The Midnite Caller earned $3,600 for running second with Rodrigo Aceves aboard. Jere Brinkerhoff and Jesus Canales’ Gallant Mystic, the winner of the Kip Didericksen Handicap in his last start, earned $2,000 for running third in this race. Schvaneveldt Handicap winner Margaritas N Coronas finished fourth. Zoomin For Kash and Molen Road completed the field. Balata Joe Now was scratched.




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