LA Futurity (Grade 2) (KYD)- $200.000 Purse
LA- For Two Year Olds
One Mile and One Sixteenth on the Dirt
December 19, 2020
The 18th running of the LA Futurity took place on Saturday, running at LA for the seventh time. Since that move, Mb Stables has been very successful in the race and that is a trend that continued here. Howl Of The Hound, a gelding by Marry Me Mandy, would pick up the win in the race, which gives Mb Stables his fourth win since the race moved here in 2014. Four is also the number of wins for Howl Of The Hound, who is perfect in his young career. In the process, he picks up the valuable KYD points, and establishes himself as one of the better early contenders for the KYD as we move into 2021. Four is also the number of wins for jockey J R Velazquez in the race, so this was certainly a good combination for all involved. Congratulations to them! The race was run in a time of 1:42.18, which is the slowest winning time since the race moved, but it is all that was necessary. Let’s take a look!
(¼ Mile- :23.80)- Judicial Decision, out of Nakamura Stables, is the quickest out of the gate and appears as though he will be the early leader, but a couple of ambitious runners from the outside would ultimately claim in the top two spots. Locamotive, from Aer Stables, was determined to get to the inside as quickly as he could, and would accomplish this, getting to the third lane. The Acber Farms-trained Extremo, who’s used to starting on the outside, would follow Locamotive and take the second spot. Judicial Decision held third in the turn with Estero Farms’ Speter advancing to his outside. After them, we would find our eventual winner, Howl Of The Hound, sitting just off the lead, two and a half lengths back, for Mb Stables. Running right beside him would be Holy Water, from D J C Racing Stables, and Daniel Son Karate was nearby on the rail for Aer Stables. Tempestuous (Mb Stables) was next, half a length ahead of the The Gypsy King (Mb Stables) and Get Set Gone (Serenity Stables) to his inside and Tko (Fractious) to his outside. Straight And Narrow (Nakamura Stables) trailed, as about seven lengths separated first from last.
(½ Mile- :47.37)- Things change in the backstretch, and we can thank Speter for that, as he is not satisfied with just holding his lane to the outside and bursts out to the front, pushing himself a length ahead of Locamotive, who did not put further pressure on him. That would come from Holy Water though, who seemed to like the idea of Speter’s push forward and looked to do the same. As this was going on, Extremo would back off a little bit from where he had been, and this puts him in a spot to run with Judicial Decision. J R Velazquez kept Howl Of The Hound in a good position here, but was not worried about Speter at all, remaining two and a half lengths back. He was a length ahead of the four wide group now consisting of Daniel Son Karate, The Gypsy King, Get Set Gone, and Tempestuous. After a gap of two and a half more lengths, Tko and Straight And Narrow now ran together.
(Top of the Stretch, 2F To Go)- Speter would lead the field around the turn, but he was a sitting duck at the top of the stretch as the field closed in. Howl Of The Hound would now set his sights on his path to victory, moving down to a clear lane, and putting himself a length from the lead. His bigger concerns now were the horses that were running right beside him, as Extremo would match his stride and push to the outside and Judicial Decision was still running very well to his inside. He would not be as clear as the others though. As for Locamotive, he could just fittingly stay on the rail, and make his push. Holy Water, who seemed as though he was going to make a bid to run at the front with Speter earlier in the race, never pursued that, and was now looking vulnerable on the outside. Get Set Gone was trying to move forward now, but finding a lane would be tough. For Tempestuous, that bid would be going about seven wide. Daniel Son Karate needed to get moving now, but visions of the Champagne may have now been in his head. The Gypsy King was looking flat. Tko, who had well back, had joined the rest of the pack, but still had a lot of work to do. Straight And Narrow opted to watch it all unfold instead of joining in.
(Finish- 1:42.18)- Howl Of The Hound would respond with extra kick in his stride for the stretch run just a little faster than the others would, and this would allow him to push about a half length in front of the field. Others would then be able to keep pace with him in the stretch from that point, making Howl Of The Hound continue to work hard for this win every step of the way. He would do so, getting a good looking win. Judicial Decision, very late in the race, did all he could to make a bid for the win, and Locamotive continued to maintain a steady and consistent stride on the rail, as he seemed to do for the entire race. In a tight photo for place, Locamotive prevails over Judicial Decision. Holy Water was good in the stretch as well, and maybe have been able to get a larger piece of the purse if not for his outside trip for the entire second half of the race. Here, he will settle for fourth by a neck over Extremo. Tempestuous came on late to be fifth, and Get Set Gone did the best he could with some traffic trouble in stretch to be sixth, barely ahead of a dead heat for seventh between Tko and Speter. Daniel Son Karate, our pick to win, disappoints in tenth, but did beat The Gypsy King and Straight And Narrow.
About The Winner- Howl Of The Hound, trained by Mb Stables and ridden to victory by J R Velazquez, is a two year old gelding by Marry Me Mandy and is out of Stop Traffic. He was bred in New Mexico by Jive Inc as a first quarter two year old, and acquired by Mb Stables when he was still unraced in the June 2019 auction for $27.060. Congratulations to the connections! Howl Of The Hound is a perfect four-for-four in his career, with three stake wins, two of which are graded. His career earnings are now $246.000.
This will be my final article of 2020, and look forward to the 2021 season. It has been a trying year for all of us, in different ways. I want to wish everyone a Happy and Safe Holiday, and I’ll see you at the track next year.
Time: :234 :471 1:11 1:42
$2 Mutuel Prices:
$1 Exacta: 2 – 11 Paid 32.00
$1 Trifecta: 2 – 11 – 6 Paid 850.90
Scratched: Classic Knowledge, Just Right, Lokoya Road
Categories: Grade II, STAKES ARTICLES