Heavily-favored Althea Gibson rolled to an easy victory in the $50,000 feature Friday, opening day of the Los Angeles County Fair Winter Thoroughbred meet at Los Alamitos.
The front-running score on the 3-year-old daughter of Grazen was the first Los Alamitos for 22-year-old apprentice jockey Jessica Pyfer.
Owned by breeder Nick Alexander and trained by Phil D’Amato, Althea Gibson broke sharply from the inside post, quickly assumed control through 22.11 and 45.17 fractions for the opening half mile and went on to prevail by six lengths while covering the 5 ½ furlongs in 1:03.35.
Out of the Bertrando mare Hey Cowboy, Althea Gibson won for the third time in six starts and the $28,800 payday increased her earnings to $121,200.
She paid $3.80, $2.80 and $2.40 as the 9-10 choice in the field of eight fillies and mares bred or sired in California.
La Aguililla, an 8-1 shot, outfinished Shylock Eddie, the 6-1 second choice, by a half-length for second and returned $7 and $4.20. The show price on Shylock Eddie was $4.40.
Trainers Hector Palma and Patty Harrington doubled Friday as did jockeys Alexis Centeno and Christian Aragon.
Palma scored back-to-back with Minoso in the second and first time starter Western Rule in the third. Including the Orange County Fair meets run at Los Alamitos between 1977-1991, Palma, 83, leads all trainers with 96 victories.
Harrington and Aragon teamed to win the opener with Tiz Love and the eighth with 14-1 shot With Due Cause while the apprentice Centeno, who earned his first Los Alamitos victory during the Summer meet earlier this year, captured the fourth with 7-1 shot Big Bad Gary and the fifth with favored True Mischief.
Racing resumes Saturday at Los Alamitos. Post time is 12:30 p.m.
The nine-race program is highlighted by the Grade I, $300,000-guaranteed Starlet for 2-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles.
Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, who has the Starlet the last three years, entered Princess Noor, Kalypso and Varda in the Starlet. The field also includes Astute, who is 2-for-2 for Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella, and Nasreddine.
The Starlet goes as the fifth race and has a scheduled post time of 2:28 p.m.
Pick Six carried over to Saturday
There will be a Pick Six carryover of $7,791 when racing resumes Saturday at Los Alamitos, the second day of the Los Angeles County Fair Winter meet.
The carryover was clinched when 14-1 shot With Due Cause in the eighth race under jockey Christian Aragon.
The Pick Six begins in Saturday’s fourth race. Post time is 12:30 p.m. and scheduled post time for the fourth is 1:58 p.m.
There is also a $1 Super High Five carryover of $4,850 into Saturday’s final race. The ninth has a scheduled post time of 4:28 p.m.
The article above was released by Los Alamitos Race Course.