Owned by Jeryl Hartley, wife of the late Ron Hartley, Fractional Interest (photo) took advantage of troubled outings from the top contenders in the eighth race to score a 22-1 upset victory on Friday at Los Alamitos.
A half-brother to Grade 1 stakes winners Powerful Favorite and Runforyourlife, the gelding by Separate Interest out of the outstanding mare Remember Me Rose covered the 300 yards in :15.815 in his second career start. For winning trainer John Cooper, this effort was exactly what he figured Fractional Effort would do in his first outing back on May 8.
“I thought he would run like this the first time I ran him,” said the veteran conditioner. “In his maiden start, he left okay, but they kind of went by him. Then they came from both sides at him. He still made a mistake tonight, but he’ll be alright.”
Fractional Interested was seventh halfway through his 300-yard debut before finishing much better to run fifth. This time around, he was fourth after stumbling and getting bumped, but once again he showed late run.
“He’s a dandy,” Cooper said. “His dam is a great mare. Seperate Interest ran against (the Cooper-trained champion) Moonist several times.”
Bred by Dr. Steve Burns, Fractional Interest was purchased by the Hartleys for $34,500 at the Los Alamitos Equine Sale. He is eligible to the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity, Grade 1 Golden State Million Futurity, Grade 2 PCQHRA Breeders Futurity and the Governor’s Cup Futurity. The Governor’s Cup trials on July 11 will be the first test for Fractional Interest.
Etelvina and Isaias Olmos’ Royal Flash Favorite earned her maiden victory in the sixth race on Friday night, the filly’s fourth attempt at earning her first victory. The filly by Favorite Cartel was actually first across the wire in her previous outing on May 9, but she was disqualified and placed third by the racing stewards for veering in and bumping a horse shortly after the start.
“It was nice that she won tonight,” trainer Chris O’Dell said. “Her owners are great people so it’s good to get a win for them. She’s also the only horse I had in all weekend so it’s nice to win. We are gearing up for the Ed Burke Futurity trials (on June 7). We have about 20 horses in the trials. We have been giving some of the 2-year-olds that won earlier works in preparation for the Ed Burke trials. We have also worked Powerful Favorite and Corona Jumpin MRL with the Vessels Maturity trials on June 14 in mind. (Golden State Million Futurity winner) Runforyourlife has been out here for about 30 days and he’s almost ready for a little breeze.”
O’Dell’s star on Friday night was Royal Flash Favorite, an $11,500 purchase at the Heritage Place Sale last year. Bred in Louisiana by Wallace Johnson, Royal Flash Favorite is out of the First Moonflash mare Sassy N Flashy. Ridden by Eduardo Nicasio, Royal Flash Favorite covered the 300 yards in :15.862.
The combination of trainer Jaime Gomez and jockey Oscar Peinado did not let a night of 2-year-old racing at Los Alamitos go by without picking up another victory together. The red-hot duo added another win to their record thanks to the Dutch Masters III-owned and bred filly Holiday Hocks in Friday’s fifth race for $20,000 maiden claimers. The filly by Kiss My Hocks covered the distance in :15.809, the fastest posted by 2-year-old on Friday night. Holiday Hocks came into this race after debuting with a fourth-place finish to Unstoppable One in the trials to the Grade II Robert Adair Kindergarten Futurity on May 3.
“This filly ran okay in the trials,” said Gomez of his 11th winner in the month of May. “She was green. She wanted to lug out. I reminded Peinado to give her time to straighten herself out. She ran a heck of a race and finished strongly. She won by 1 ¾ lengths. She’s paid to the GS and Two Million, so we’ll see if she continues to improve.”
“Peinado is doing a tremendous job,” Gomez added. “He’s riding patiently and that’s so important. I remember asking the great Bobby Adair to give me some advice that I could share with Oscar Andrade, Sr. when he was going to start riding at Los Alamitos. Bobby Adair told me how important it was for the rider to give the horse time to find a good stride before rushing to do anything else. It was great advice then and it is still great advice now. Oscar Peinado is doing exactly that and look at how well he’s doing.”