RUIDOSO, NM — Kj Desparado got up in the final strides to win the $3 million All American Futurity Monday at Ruidoso Downs Race Track before a crowd of thousands who attended the final day of the 2021 racing season.
The victory was sweet for jockey Adrian Ramos and trainer Wes Giles who won their first All American Futurity. It was also a first victory for owners John and Kathy Lee of Chandler, Arizona along with their partner Ruben Mares.
“I remember in the springtime Adrian assured me that this was the kind of horse that could win the All American and it turned out to be true,” trainer Wes Giles said in the winner’s circle. “Right now I just feel blessed to have this horse in my barn and to be associated with the owners who made this possible.”
Kj Desparado broke third from the number-nine starting gate and needed to catch frontrunner Fdd Scout who had the lead in the eleventh race all the way until the final strides when the gelding got up just in time.
“It was a hard-fought win,” rider Ramos said in the winner’s circle. “I had faith in my horse from the start. He has been strong all season and finally put it all together today.”
Meanwhile betting favorite Jess Savin Candy, attempting to win the quarter horse racing triple crown, did not offer his anticipated late-charge and finished fourth. The gelding was vanned from the track as a precaution at the request of jockey Francisco Calderon, according to trainer John Stinebaugh.
Kj Desparado paid $11.80, $4.60 and $3.80 running the 440-yards in a winning time of 21.252 seconds. His sire is Apollitical Jess out of the mare Tres Veses by Tres Seis.
In the $200,000 All American Juvenile, My Peligrosito and jockey Ramos was an upset winner at 13-1 odds and paid $29.40, $18.80 and $9.40 going gate-to-wire in the tenth race in a winning time of 21.168 seconds for 440-yards.
“This horse has been progressing all summer,” Ramos said in the winner’s circle. “Once we had some daylight he opened up and ran as expected.”
My Peligrosito’s sire is One Fabulous Eagle out of the mare Peligrosita by Walk Thru Fire. The gelding is owned by Abelardo Gallegos and trainer by Albert Valles.
In the $200,000 All American Gold Cup, Danjer overcame a slow beginning to nip Mi Amor Secreto by a head in the ninth race and earned a third consecutive trip to the winner’s circle.
“My horse’s momentum was going backwards when the gate opened,” jockey Cody Smith said in the winner’s circle. “We were playing catch up the entire race, but this horse doesn’t seem to know how fast he really is. He turned it on when he needed it and we got there just in time.”
Danjer is a five-year-old with career earnings of about $1.2 million. The gelding’s sire is Fdd Dynasty out of the mare Shez Jess Toxic by Take Off Jess. He paid $4.40, $3.00 and $2.40 in a winning time of 21.308 seconds for 440-yards. Danjer has now won thirteen career races including five at Ruidoso Downs.
Racing continues next season at Ruidoso Downs Memorial Day weekend.