J&M Racing and Farm’s Jm Specialwynn won the first of 10 trials to the Grade 1, $815,000 Ruidoso Derby on Sunday and his time of :19.796 for 400 yards held up as the top time on an afternoon that saw each of last summer’s Grade 1 futurity winners defeated.
The horses with the 10-fastest times qualify for the 400-yard Ruidoso Derby on June 6 and non-qualifiers may compete in the $100,000 Mr Jess Perry on the same day. Preference for the Mr Jess Perry depends on the horse’s trial time.
Jm Specialwynn easily took his trial by two lengths for trainer Albert Franco. The Walk Thru Fire son’s only other career win from five starts came when he took the $100,000 All American Juvenile last Labor Day weekend.
Jockey Ramon Sanchez had never ridden Jm Specialwynn in a race. “I think the wind might have been a little lower when he ran (nine-mile-per-hour headwind), but he ran a good race,” said Sanchez. “I was only on him once in the morning.” The nine mile-per-hour wind was one of three trials with that wind speed, the lowest of the afternoon.
Sanchez also qualified fifth-fastest qualifier Bf Farm Boss, one of three finalists from the Paul Jones barn.
Leading the Jones trio is second-fastest qualifier Bone Chillin, a First Down Dash gelding who is finding his form as a three-year-old.
Bone Chillin was winless from two starts last year, but is now two-for-two this year.
The gelding won a maiden race by three quarters of a length in March at Sunland Park and came back to take the eighth Ruidoso Derby trial by a length and one quarter. He was clocked in :19.813.
“He ran a huge race,” said jockey Cody Jensen. “Last year, he looked good at the ranch, but he just lost interest. So he was gelded and turned out. He’s really matured and just look at him.” Bone Chillin was waking ahead of Jensen and showing his large stifle and gaskin.
Bone Chillin was a $200,000 purchase at last year’s Ruidoso Select Yearling Sale by 5 Guys and Fries Partnership.
Jones also saddled fourth-fastest qualifier Glock and fifth-fastest qualifier Bf Farm Boss. Glock was timed in :19.820 while prevailing in a three-horse blanket finish, Bf Farm Boss ran like his older brother and Ruidoso Downs’ 440-yard track-record holder Strawkin to get a late running :19.824 time.
“Strawkins was quieter, but he is a gelding,” said Jones. “They are both big horses who like a distance of ground.”
Last summer’s futurity winners did not have their best days while each was coming off a winter-long layoff. Champion and Ruidoso Futurity winner Kiss My Hocks was fourth in the seventh trial, All American Futurity winner Jm Miracle was second in the ninth trial and Rainbow Futurity winner Trendi finished second and then disqualified in the fifth trial.
Leading the eligible horses for the Mr Jess Perry is 11th-fastest qualifier Jm Onehotchickie. The First Down Dash filly won the fourth trial in :19.911.
Jm Onehotchickie has the same owner and trainer as top-qualifier Jm Specialwynn.
Ruidoso Downs’ first three days have seen exceptional handle figures. On Saturday, the handle was $711,854, which was up 27 percent over a year ago. There were 12 races, including 10 Ruidoso Derby trials, on the comparable 2014 day.
2015 Ruidoso Derby Qualifiers
Horse/Trial # Trainer Jockey Wind Time
Jm Specialwynn/1 Albert Franco Ramon Sanchez 9h 19.796
Bone Chillin/8 Paul Jones Cody Jensen 13h 19.813
Tempting Destiny/2 Mike Joiner GR Carter 9h 19.817
Glock/7 Paul Jones Sal Martinez 10h 19.820
Bf Farm Boss/6 Paul Jones Ramon Sanchez 15h 19.824
Colbalt Creek/7 John Stinebaugh Omar Reyes 10h 19.853
Jm Onfire/7 Albert Franco Felipe Garcia-Luna 10h 19.865
First Famous Effort/10 John Stinebaugh Omar Reyes 14h 19.883
Fast Copy Kat/2 Brian Muse Cody Jensen 9h 19.899
Thunderball B/6 Mike Joiner GR Carter 15h 19.904
Eligible for the $100,000 Mr Jess Perry
Jm Onehotchickie/4 Albert Franco Jesse Levario 15h 19.911
Moonstruck Love/3 Paul Jones Sal Martinez 11h 19.933
Sam Crow/9 Blane Wood Ricky Ramirez 12h 19.933
Apolliticalsignature/2 Blane Wood Ricky Ramirez 9h 19.954
Jm Famous Master/7 Albert Franco Jesse Levario 13h 20.009
Visual Magic/10 Blane Wood Ricky Ramirez 14h 20.026
Lethal Perry/5 Blane Wood Ricky Ramirez 14h 20.031
Rebas Corona Eagle/3 Blane Wood Ricky Ramirez 11h 20.079
Jm Miracle/9 Albert Franco Ramon Sanchez 12h 20.079
Flashy First Cartel/4 Anna Marie Crowson Tanner Thedford 15h 20.089