|Fastest Qualifier Emilianos Wagon Victorious in the $77,100 Sam Houston Maiden Classic at Sam Houston Race Park
(Houston, Texas - Saturday, April 5, 2014) - Ten trials were run on Friday, March 21 for the $77,100 Sam Houston Maiden Classic. The fastest qualifier was Emilianos Wagon, and he showed his exceptional speed and talent in the final, powering to his first stakes score.
The three-year-old son of Pyc Paint Your Wagon is bred, owned and trained by Jorge Haddad of Seguin, Texas. With Saul Ramirez, Jr. in the irons, the bay gelding closed gamely from the center of the track, covering 350 yards in :17.748 seconds.
This was just the sixth start for Haddad's homebred, who has matured significantly in the last year.
"We were really confident about tonight," said Haddad. "He has been a really great horse. He always gives his best and tries hard. He showed it tonight."
Haddad has bred several prominent Quarter Horses, including Ragazzo, El Duero and Giorgino. He took a minute after the trophy presentation to talk about the potential of Emilianos Wagon.
"He's a half-brother to El Duero," said Haddad. "I feel that he can be one of our best."
Emilianos Wagon is named after Haddad's second son, Emiliano. Older brother Jorge Jr. and sister, Giuliana joined Haddad and his wife, Kitty, in the winner's circle.
Mito Fire, ridden by Mario Trujillo, outran his odds of 24-1 in completing the exacta. Owned by Gilberto Flores and trained by Bobby Touchet, the Walk Thru Fire gelding won his trial recording the eighth fastest time. He began his career last summer at Ruidoso Downs in trials for both the Rainbow and All American Futurities.
Mike Amburn's Pyc Paint Your Wagon gelding, Paintedinoil under jockey Luis Ramirez, ran third.
The final purse of $77,100 surpassed the 2013 purse of $53,400. Haddad has several options for Emilianos Wagon, including the Sam Houston Classic and Firecracker Derby at Delta Downs.
Upcoming Sam Houston Race Park Major Quarter Horse Stakes
There are 18 stakes on the 2014 American Quarter Horse Stakes schedule, and Sam Houston Race Park will once again participate in the Bank of America Racing Challenge, the richest and most successful program in American Quarter Horse racing today. Stakes for the next two weeks include:
Sat., April 12 - $100,000 Bank of America Texas Challenge (G1) and $20,000 Red Cell Texas Distance Challenge
Sat., April 19 - $563,950 Sam Houston Futurity (G2),
$197,300 Sam Houston Derby (G3), and
$50,000 Sam Houston Juvenile Stakes