El Paso, TX — 2012 West Texas Derby and 2013 West Texas Maturity winner Tf Featured Effort returned to his favorite racetrack on Sunday and raced to a smashing win in the $50,000 KOFX Radio Handicap at Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino.
Under jockey Raul Gutierrez, Tf Featured Effort regained his winning form with a powerful performance sparked by a good start in the 350 yards stakes event for older runners. The five-year-old son of Feature Mr Jess broke out gates without trouble and was within striking range of the lead. By mid-stretch, Gutierrez had plenty of horse under him, and Tf Featured Effort was rolling under a hand ride. He put away the fast starting Pajarita Sita with 75 yards to go and won confidently by three parts of a length. The winning time was a sharp 17.143 seconds.
Despite his multiple stakes winning form, Tf Featured Effort was let go at over 5-1 odds and paid $13.60. He was coming off two subpar efforts at Zia Park last fall. Winning trainer Jaime Dominguez was very pleased with his horse and indicated that Tf Featured Effort might return to defend his title in the 2014 West Texas Maturity to be held at Sunland Park on Saturday, March 1. Trials will be run on Friday, Feb. 7.
Tf Featured Effort earned $30,000 from his 6th career win in 20 starts. His career bankroll stands at nearly $230,000 for owners Heysol Howlet and Julieta Torres of Peyton, Colorado. The fast stallion has won 5 races from 10 starts over Sunland Park soil.
The fast starting Pajarita Sita broke like a bullet as usual and led early under jockey Esgar Ramirez. The daughter of Pappasito ran boldly throughout but could not hold off the winner. She finished second as the 3-1 second favorite. 21-1 long shot Mighty Famous Vic wound up third, beaten less than a length.
13-race Bet On Ballou finished fourth as the 2-1 favorite and completed a $1 superfecta worth a healthy $4,341.40.
Live racing resumes on Tuesday at 12:15 p.m.