Dunn Ranch’s Southern Wagon dominated the running of the $30,000 La Pacifica Handicap, as the PYC Paint Your Wagon filly cruised to a length victory in the 350-yard race on Saturday at Los Alamitos.
With Jose Nicasio aboard for trainer Monty Arrossa, Southern Wagon took the lead right from the start while opening a daylight advantage from there. The homebred filly crossed the wire in a time of :17.560 while recording her fifth win in 12 starts. She earned $16,500 in the La Pacifica to take her career earnings to $165,851. Southern Wagon came into this race following a strong second to Dreams Divine in the $403,500 Los Alamitos Oaks on March 28.
“She just got outrun in the Oaks by a better filly,” Arrossa said. “She ran a great race and just got beat. Tonight, she ran her race. She broke great and ran her race. She is getting pretty consistent. As a 2-year-old she was a little immature, but she is grown up a lot and her mind has gotten really good. I am very happy with her.”
Southern Wagon won her Oaks trial on March 7 and she qualified to Grade 1 Golden State Million Futurity as a 2-year-old.
“I’m very thankful to Matt and Bendi Dunn,” Arrossa added. “They’ve been awesome. They are not only good to train for but they’re good people and they are good for our industry. They breed a lot of horses, they race a lot of horses, they sales prep, they race barrel horses. They’re good for the Quarter Horse industry, period. They are the kind of people that we need in this industry. They do things right and I appreciate them.”
It was a big Saturday night nationally for Arrossa, who also watched from his home base in Southern California his trainee, the Grade II Oklahoma Futurity winner Aint She Tempting, post the fastest qualifying time to the Grade I, $1,022,260 Heritage Place Futurity at Remington Park. Aint She Tempting won her 350-yard trial by 4 ¼ lengths and in a time of :17.570.
“I didn’t expect her to do that,” Arrossa said. “We thought she would run a good race. That was amazing, that’s what that was. She’s a true blessing.”
Howard Nichols’ One Sweet Change earned $6,750 for finishing second in the La Pacifica. The filly by One Sweet Jess was ridden by Oscar Andrade, Jr. for trainer Jaime Gomez. Ashley Garcia’s All Prettied Up finished third with Armando Cervantes up for trainer Angela Aquino. All Prettied Up earned $3,750. Terra Fire, Suite Expectations, Fashin Icon and Javelina Cantina completed the field.