$2.4M All-American Futurity at Ruidoso Downs

Rob Gregorka

Las Vegas, NV -- It's not every day that a Quarter Horse race can capture the attention of the horse racing world, but that is exactly what will happen this upcoming Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 5, at Ruidoso Downs. The New Mexico horse track is set to host the $2.4 million All-American Futurity, in what will be North America's richest purse for 2-year-old racehorses. There will be a Quarter Horse record, $1.2 million awarded to the race's winner.

Another record this race has already set is the 26 trial races that have narrowed down the fastest times to give us a 10-horse field. The fastest of them all was Ochoa, ridden by jockey Jack Martin and trained by Dwayne "Sleepy" Gilbreath. Ochoa will attempt to bring his trainer, Gilbreath, his third victory in the All-American Futurity. He previously won with On A High in 1983 and with Refrigerator in 1990. However, Gilbreath is focused on winning the race for Ochoa's co-owner, Johnny T.L. Jones. He recently was quoted saying, "I want to win this race for that man right there [pointing to Jones in the winners circle]. He's been a friend for a long, long time and I want this for him."

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The horse with the second fastest qualifying time was Wayne Barton's Lotta Love For Robyn, who finished second to Ochoa in their time trial race. Lotta Love For Robyn is trained by John Bassett, will be ridden by Saul Ramirez Jr., and qualified with a time of :21.145. The times posted by the horses in the trials were run at the same distance for the All-American Futurity at 440 yards.

While the actual All-American Futurity at Ruidoso Downs is much shorter than the buildup to the race, it is nothing short of exhilarating. Watching this race can give even the mildest of fans a jolt of adrenaline. It's the fastest horses, competing for the industry's biggest payout. So this Labor Day, make sure not to miss out on Quarter Horse Racing's most important race, the $2.4 million All-American Futurity.

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