RUIDOSO DOWNS, New Mexico (June 21, 2014) – Trainer Todd Fincher sent out the top two finishers and jockey Ruby Gonzalez, 22, won her second stakes race when Lux made a sweeping move to take the $155,995 Mountain Top Futurity for New Mexico-breds on Saturday afternoon at Ruidoso Downs.
Also on the program was the $20,000 Tricky Dust over 870 yards with Stephen Brown’s thoroughbred Cowboy Hennessy prevailing after a fight through the stretch.
Lux finished one-and-one-half lengths over stable mate Diabolical Dame while favored Liberty Lover was third at 13-10 odds.
Gonzalez scored her first stakes win in the $55,000 Totah Handicap on June 17 at SunRay Park. She rode You’ve Been Duped, who is trained by Fincher.
Lux, the 4-1 second choice, settled into fifth place and made her move on the turn.
“I just asked him a little and he came running strong,” said Gonzalez.
Owned by Bessie and Steve Prather with E. Dwayne Taylor, Lux was forced to run seven-wide into the stretch and still had enough stamina to get up for the convincing win.
“He’s got a big stride and is not a heavy horse,” said Fincher. “We know that he can sprint and that’s a good thing. We’ll see about two turns.”
The gelded son of Quinton’s Gold will now be a prime prospect for the $175,000 Rio Grande Senor Futurity on July 27. It is part of the Zia Festival for New Mexico-breds. The two-day Zia Festival offers more than $1 million in purses.
In the Tricky Dust, the Enrique Portillo Gomez-ridden Cowboy Hennessy engaged in a tight battle through the stretch and came through at 9-1 odds with a time of :46.357.
The quarter horse Im Royal Quick was a neck back in second and another quarter horse, Oh Jess Fly, ran third. He was three quarters of a length behind Im Royal Quick.
Im Royal Quick and Oh Jess Fly are each trained by Jose Manuel Barron.
The thoroughbred Safe Trip, the 7-10 favorite, made a run from last place to finish fifth. He won the Fine Loom Handicap with a rally between horses in his previous out.
The Glenn Brumlow-trained Cowboy Hennessy stepped up with the stakes win after taking a $7,500 claiming race in his previous start. He went from gate-to-wire in the 870-yard race to prevail by two-and-one-half lengths.