Wednesday, December 31, 2014

STAKES RECAPS: Louisiana Futurities

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Contact: Michael Adolphson, Staff Writer, 504.948.1255,



NEW ORLEANS (Wednesday, December 31, 2014) – Wind Chill Factor and Cook Some Rice both ran to their morning line favoritism on Wednesday afternoon and outclassed their rivals in their respective divisions of the $100,000 Louisiana Futurity.  Gary Scherer and Al & Bill Ulwelling’s Wind Chill Factor won under regular pilot Willie Martinez by three-quarters of a length, while Scott and Company’s Cook Some Rice – who wound up going off as the second choice at 2-1 – won by the same margin under Gerard Melancon.

Wind Chill Factor won for the fourth time of her young 5-race career after breaking well and stalking the pacesetters and then holding Set-Hut’s stakes-winning Forest Lake to second.  Coming from the five-hole, the daughter of Successful Appeal was close to solid fractions of :22.08 and :46.29  before taking over and winning in a time of 1:12.03 for the six furlongs.  Sent off as 1-2 favorite, the dark bay filly returned $3, $2.20 and $2.10, earning $54,450 to boost her career bankroll to $225,650.  The win was her third consecutive stakes in six weeks – all with Martinez in the irons. 

“Thank god for the opportunity and thank you to the Wind Chill Factor connections.  Gary Scherer has done a great job,” Martinez said.  “The plan was to ride her like she was the best horse – and she was.  When she got a little dirt on her face, she hesitated a little bit.  I knew she would overcome that, so I got her in the clear and made my run from there.  With her, when she pins her ears, she’s letting you know it’s time to go.  So, I waited as long as I could at the top of the lane.”


“I was a little scared that the horse was catching her at the end, but she ran her race,” Scherer said.  “She might have got a little tired, but she gets a little break here before the next one.  She’ll most likely run at Delta for her next two.  There’s the ($100,000) Azalea (Stakes on Mar. 6) after the ($125,000 Louisiana Premier Night Starlet) on February 7th.”


            Forest Lake, at 28-1, rallied to finish second under Hector Santiago for trainer Jerry Delhomme, paying $10.20 and $5.80.  Southern Legacy Thoroughbreds’ Private Promise made a belated bid to finish third under James Graham for conditioner James ‘Sweet’ Hodges, paying $5.80 to show.

Jackie Ems Pal, Vivian Da Bling, Starrific Is Ours and Irish Salute completed the order of finish.

In the colt and gelding division, Cook Some Rice made a late run to forge to victory for trainer Sam Breaux.  After breaking slowly from the three-hole, the son of Half Ours made a prolonged drive under a confident Gerard Melancon to defeat 4-5 favorite Just Kissing Buck in the final sixteenth.  After swift fractions of :21.85 and :45.50, pacesetters Union Builder and My Friend Flavin folded when challenged by the aforementioned top two, who in turn went on to finish the race in 1:11.56.  Cook Some Rice won for the second time in six starts and returned $6.80, $2.80 and $2.40 while earning $53,430 to boost his career bankroll to $114,840.  The victory came one race after a game second in the $150,000 Louisiana Legacy at Delta Downs on Nov. 22. 

“I felt great on the turn,” Melancon said.  “He got away a little slow, but from day one he’s been a little trouble in the gate.  Once you get him in there, you just have to let him be.  I had him in the right spot today.  This colt can be his own enemy.  If he ever puts it all together, he has a lot of ability.”


“I was really glad to win – I knew we had to beat (Just Kissing Buck),” Breaux said.  “He did his job today.  He’s not as speedy as those other horses.  I ran him at a mile last time at Delta and he came from the off the pace and came up to the lead and finished second, coming up a little short – but he might have needed another work.  We are probably going to stretch him out again in the Louisiana-bred stakes they have over the season between Delta and here.”


Suzette Necaise’s Just Kissing Buck, under Colby Hernandez for trainer Earl Bankston, paid $2.20 and $2.10.  Valene Farm’s Slowpoke Sam closed from last under Willie Martinez to be third and returned $3.60 to show.


“The trip was good,” Hernandez said.  “Everything went great, I just got beat by a better horse.”


Wild Tchoupitoulas, My Friend Flavin and Union Builder completed order of finish. 


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