The first of three daytime thoroughbred meets at Los Alamitos this year will begin Saturday, June 25.
The nine-day Los Angeles County Fair meet will continue through Sunday, July 10. Racing will be conducted Saturday-Sunday (June 25-26) the first week, Friday-Monday (July 1-4) the second week and Friday-Sunday (July 8-10) the final week. Post time is 2 p.m.
The season will be highlighted by the $200,000-guaranteed Great Lady M. Stakes for fillies and mares (3-year-olds & up) at 6 ½ furlongs. The Grade II will be run Monday, July 4.
The other two stakes to be run during the season are the $100,000 Bertrando for 3-year-olds & up bred or sired in California and the $125,000 Los Alamitos Derby. The one-mile Bertrando is the opening day feature while the Los Alamitos Derby, which is contested at 1 1/8 miles, will be run Saturday, July 9.
The wagering menu includes the Pick Six – with the traditional 70-30 split – a pair of $1 Pick 4’s – races 2-5 and the final four races – as well as the extremely popular Players’ Pick 5 – a 50-cent minimum wager with a reduced 14% takeout rate which is offered on the first five races.
There will also be a handicapping contest Monday, July 4. The Los Alamitos Racing Association will offer a cash prize and a pair of berths to the 2023 National Thoroughbred Racing Handicapping Championship in Las Vegas.
Cost to enter is $500. Of that amount, $100 will be placed in the contest prize pool with the remaining $400 going towards a live money wagering card.
Tournament races will include the entire Los Alamitos card. Permitted wagers are win, place, show, exactas, trifectas and daily doubles. Each entry must bet at least $50 on a minimum of five races, but there is no wagering limit.
A 6-year-old son of Grazen owned and bred by Nick Alexander, Desmond Doss will try to defend his title in the Bertrando.
Trained by Steve Miyadi, the gray, who is out of the Malek mare Malley Girl, won the 2021 renewal by a half-length over longshot Tom’s Surprise. If Desmond Doss is successful Saturday, he will join Soi Phet as the only two-time winner of the race. Soi Phet won the inaugural Bertrando in 2014 and scored again in 2018.
No worse than third in four starts at the Bertrando distance, Desmond Doss, who comes off a victory in the Thor’s Echo May 28 at Santa Anita in his 2022 debut, has won six of 18 and banked $361,141.
Alexander and Miyadi also entered Johnny Podres. The 5-year-old son of Grazen and the Harlan’s Holiday mare Malibu Holiday is 3-for-22 with a bankroll of $185,300. He won at eight furlongs two starts ago, leading throughout on the turf May 21.
Trained by John Sadler for Hronis Racing LLC, Loud Mouth will be looking for his second stakes win at Los Alamitos.
The son of Boisterous and the Tale of the Cat mare Drama Cat captured – via disqualification – the 2021 E.B. Johnston last Sept. 12 when owned by Thomsen Racing and trained by Steve Knapp.
The 6-year-old has won nine of 36 and banked $448,494. He won at the Bertrando distance March 19 in his first race of the year.
Trained by Dean Pederson for Per Antonsen, John Nicoletti and breeder Harris Farms, Inc., Fashionably Fast will stretch out after chasing Desmond Doss in the Thor’s Echo.
A nine-time winner, the 7-year-old Lucky Pulpit gelding out of the Forestry mare Fall Fashion has earned $717,623 in 30 races. His last try at the distance came when third in the last year’s Santana Mile. Fashionably Fast’s two victories at a mile came in the 2020 and 2021 Tiznow Stakes.
Owned by Michael and Janet Dante and trained by Mike Puype, Irish Heatwave will be looking for his initial victory on dirt. The 6-year-old Unusual Heat gelding out of the Broken Vow mare Irish Winnie has collected all six of his wins on grass. He has one third place finish in four races on dirt. He’s earned $370,390 in 38 lifetime outings.
The Bertrando will go as the last of nine races. Scheduled post time is 5:58 p.m.
From inside out, the field for the Bertrando Stakes: Johnny Podres, Armando Ayuso rides, 119 pounds; Desmond Doss, Juan Hernandez, 124; Irish Heatwave, Kyle Frey, 119; Loud Mouth, Ramon Vazquez, 121 and Fashionably Fast, Tiago Pereira, 119.