Jessa Louisiana Zoom wins $634k race for local owners

Jessa Louisiana Zoom

Bridge City native Jason Richards and his business partner Mike Leblanc can now proclaim that they own the top 2-year-old quarter horse in the entire state of Louisiana.

The undefeated Jessa Louisiana won the biggest race of the season July 11 at Delta Downs by going gate to wire in the $634,530 Lee Berwick Memorial Futurity, covering 350 yards in 17.524 (90 speed index), defeating Shining Presence by a half-length.

Ridden by Danny Lavergne for trainer Frank Cavazos, the daughter of Jess Louisiana Blue improved to a perfect 4-for-4 and has earned $473,153. It was her second futurity win this season after dominating nine other Louisiana bred fillies in the $273,977 Lassie Futurity on April 24. Richards and Leblanc purchased her for $22,000 at last year’s Louisiana Quarter Horse Breeder’s Association Sale.

In the $100,000 Louisiana Classic, Open Me a Corona just got up near the wire to win, going 21.383 (99 speed index) in the 400-yard feat for trainer Bobby Martinez and owners Charles Forbes Jr. and Tommy Hays. Saul Ramirez Jr. was in the saddle. The 5-year-old has won all four stakes races this year and is 10-for-12 lifetime for career earnings of $666,289.

The biggest upset of the night came in the $50,000 Flashy Hemp Stakes as 14-1 longshot Camerons Game won by a half-length with John Hamilton riding the 3-year-old who covered 350 yards in 17.405 (94 speed index) for trainer Kenny Weeks and owners Lester Colomb Jr. and Jon Price. The filly is 5-for-8 with earnings of $78,730.

Blues Favorite Fish won his third consecutive race but became a stakes winner after winning the $50,000 Louisiana Juvenile for trainer Joe Manucy and owner Lyle Guillory. With jockey Orlando Baldillez in the irons, the 2-year-old gelding was first out of the gate and first to the finish line covering 350 yards in 17.535 (90 speed index). Blues Favorite Fish has earned $55,200 in four starts.

The 870-yard $50,000 Live Oak was also dominated by a gate-to-wire winner in Jls Book of Psalms with Pat Watson riding for trainer Roy Roberts and owner Jls Speed Horse Ranch.

The 4-year-old gelding won for the fourth time in 14 outs and raised his bankroll to $103,379. Jls Book of Psalms went the distance in 46.900 (83 speed index).

The shortest race on the card was the $50,000 Flying Breed Stakes at 250 yards, won by Zoomin for Bugs under jockey Armando Ramirez for trainer Randy Hebert and owner Joan Rood. It was the first stakes win for the 3-year-old gelding who has a record of 5 wins in 12 starts for $131,480.

The $40,000 Louisiana Starter was taken by First Prize Copy under jock David Alvarez for trainer Martin Trejo and owner Ana Alvidrez. Winning time for the 350-yard race was 17.511 (91 speed index), and the graded stakes winner raised his earnings to $172,623 in 23 starts with 11 victories.

The 2015-16 thoroughbred season will begin on Friday, Oct. 16.

Evangeline Downs

Delta’s sister track in Opelousas, La., held two divisions of the $100,000 D.S. “Shine” Young Futurity on July 11, one for the fillies, and one for the colts and geldings, and both winners left no questions during their respected races.

With jockey Gerard “G-Money” Melancon in the saddle, Cajun Conoseir made her move down the stretch and drew away to win by 3 3/4 lengths to win the Fillies Division covering 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:05.52. Owned by Whispering Oak Farms and trained by Steve Flint, the 2-year-old improved to a perfect 2-for-2 and has earned $76,800.

During the race, Elegant Idea appeared to clip heels with another horse and unseated jockey Diego Saenz. Saenz was immediately taken to a local hospital and it was later announced he had a broken left leg.

In the Colts/Geldings Division, Cale’s Gold was good as gold as the colt ran away from the competition to win by 7 lengths, covering 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:04.19 with Colby Hernandez riding for trainer Karl Broberg and owner Jerry Namy staying perfect at 2-for-2.

Live thoroughbred racing continues Wednesday-Saturday at Evangeline with a first post time at 5:40 p.m. and can be bet inside Delta’s off-track-betting room.