2018 Los Alamitos Winter Thoroughbred Meet

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Los Alamitos Press Release | OTB Writer

The third and final Thoroughbred meet of 2018 at Los Alamitos Race Course will begin Thursday, Dec. 6.

The eight-day Winter season follows the 12-day Los Angeles County Fair at Los Alamitos meet in September and the 12-day Summer Thoroughbred Festival in June-July.

Racing will be conducted on a Thursday-Sunday basis through Sunday, Dec. 16. Post time will be 1 p.m on weekdays and 12:30 p.m. on weekends.

The two-week meet will be highlighted by a pair of Grade 1 races for 2-year-olds - the $300,000-guaranteed Los Alamitos CashCall Futurity and the $300,000-guaranteed Starlet - Saturday, Dec. 8.

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 2019 Kentucky Derby next May 4 at Churchill Downs.

Among the leading candidates for the Futurity is Improbable, an impressive winner of the Street Sense Stakes Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, who has won all four renewals of the Futurity - Dortmund (2014), Mor Spirit (2015), Mastery (2016) and McKinzie (2017) - since the race was moved to Los Alamitos from Hollywood Park.

Baffert has won the CashCall Futurity, which was run in Inglewood from 1981-2013, a record 10 times.

Other nominees for the Futurity, are double Grade I winner Game Winner, King of Speed, a two-time stakes winner on turf for trainer Jeff Bonde, and first out Los Alamitos winner Mucho Gusto.

The Starlet - which is restricted to fillies - is one of the events on the "Road to the Kentucky Oaks.'' The winner earns 10 points towards a spot in the Kentucky Oaks next May 3.

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Among the possible starters for the Starlet are the Baffert-trained Chasing Yesterday, a half-sister to 2015 Triple Crown winner and Horse of the Year American Pharoah, and Vibrance, third in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs.

Both the CashCall Futurity and the Starlet will be run at 1 1/16 miles.

Completing the stakes program are a pair of one mile races for 2-year-olds bred or sired in California - the $100,000-guaranteed Soviet Problem for fillies and the $100,000-guaranteed King Glorious.

The Soviet Problem will be run Saturday, Dec. 15 while the King Glorious will be offered Sunday, Dec. 16.

Track gates - including the Clubhouse and Vessels Club - will open at 9:30 a.m. General parking is free with grandstand admission $3 ($2 for seniors).

The wagering menu includes the Pick Six - with the traditional 70/30 split and no jackpot provision - a pair of $1 Pick 4's - races 2-5 and the final four races - as well as the popular Players' Pick 5 - a 50-cent minimum wager with a reduced 14% takeout rate which is offered on the first five races.

In addition to the Starlet and Los Alamitos CashCall Futurity, the Dec. 8 program will feature a live money handicapping contest with as many as three seats available to the 2019 National Handicapping Championship in Las Vegas.

There will also be a 2019 wall calendar giveaway - one per paid admission while supplies last - Saturday, Dec. 15.

Entries were taken Monday for the opening day program and a total of 69 horses were entered in eight races.

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