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OffTrackBetting.com - The winter meet at Los Alamitos is highlighted by a pair of Grade I races for 2-year-olds - the $300,000-guaranteed Los Alamitos CashCall Futurity and the $300,000-guaranteed Starlet - Saturday, Dec. 9.
The Futurity is one of the races on the "Road to the Kentucky Derby" with the winner receiving 10 points towards a berth in the Kentucky Derby next May 5 at Churchill Downs.
Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, who has won the Los Alamitos CashCall Futurity all three times the race has been run here, will be well-represented in the Grade I when it is offered Saturday, Dec. 9.
Baffert, whose local CashCall Futurity victories have come with Dortmund (2014), Mor Spirit (2015) and Mastery (2016) after he won it six times at Hollywood Park between 1997-2011, is expected to start Breeders' Cup Juvenile runner-up Solomini and impressive debut winner McKinzie a week from today. The Futurity will be run at 1 1/16 miles and has a guaranteed purse of $300,000.
A son of Curlin and the Storm Cat mare Surf Song, Solomini has one win in three starts for Zayat Stables LLC and was second behind Bolt d'Oro in the Grade I Frontrunner before chasing Good Magic in the BC Juvenile Nov. 4.
Named in honor of the late longtime Los Alamitos executive Brad McKinzie, who died in August, McKinzie dominated maidens Oct. 28, winning by 5 ½ lengths in the race at seven furlongs. The son of Street Sense and the Petionville mare Runway Model has trained well since the victory, including a 1:12.45 drill Nov. 27. The move at Santa Anita was the best of 18 at six furlongs that morning.
Others considered possible for the race are Greyvitos, who broke his maiden at nearly 20-1 in the Grade III Bob Hope Stakes Nov. 11, Runaway Ghost, a 7 ½ length winner of the Golden Nugget at Golden Gate Fields Nov. 11 and Instilled Regard, an easy maiden winner Oct. 29 at the Futurity distance. Greyvitos and Runaway Ghost will have to be supplemented for $10,000.
The Dec. 9 program will also feature the Grade I, $300,000-guaranteed Starlet, which is for 2-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles.
Baffert, who won the Starlet three times when it was offered at Hollywood Park (1981-2013), could start Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies runner-up Alluring Star and Desi Arnaz winner Dream Tree, who will have to be supplemented for $10,000.
Owned by Baoma Corporation, Alluring Star, a daughter of Exchange Rate, chased upset winner Caledonia Road Nov. 4 after finishing second as the 19-10 favorite in the Grade I Chandelier five weeks earlier.
An Uncle Mo filly owned by Phoenix Thoroughbred III, Dream Tree is 2-for-2, prevailing by a nose over Midnight Bisou in both her maiden win at six furlongs and in the seven-furlong Arnaz.
War Heroine, a 6 ¾ length debut winner for owner Gary Barber and trainer Peter Miller, Miss Mo Mentum, who comes off a decisive score in a Churchill Downs allowance Nov. 16 for Barber and trainer Mark Casse, Exuberance and Yesterday's News are also considered possible Starlet starters. Exuberance, War Heroine and Miss Mo Mentum will have to be supplemented for $10,000.