Two longshots scored wins in the Harley Greene Derby Trials Monday, May 17 at Indiana Grand, including WH Imastreakinbeach and Jose Ruiz, who turned in the fastest of three trials to set up the $75,000 final of the Harley Greene Derby set for Saturday, June 5. The duo covered the 350-yard dash in a time of :17.736 to lead 16 among the trials.
Starting from post three, Ruiz had WH Imastreakinbeach out of the gate quickly and got the early edge over race favorite Beach Blast. The sophomore filly by Indiana’s top sire, Escondido Beach, continued her momentum all the way to the wire for the one-length win over Beach Blast and Sammy Mendez. Beach Diva and L. Danny Martinez tightened up the photo on Beach Blast but had to settle for third in the close finish.
Owned by Thomas Wylie, WH Imastreakinbeach was making her first start of 2021. She is now four for eight lifetime under the direction of trainer Erin Thompson, Indiana Grand’s all-time leading female Quarter Horse trainer. WH Imastreakinbeach, who was a surprise to bettors paying $13.80 for the win, was bred by White Horse Ranch of Indiana.
The second fastest trial winner of the night was Stone Lake, 2-Year-Old champion in Indiana last year. The Escondido Beach gelding, trained by Tony Cunningham, looked impressive the entire race moving to a two-and one-half length advantage at the finish line for jockey L. Danny Martinez. Beach Stone and Cesar Esqueda finished second over Ashwins Valentine and Oscar Macias for third.
Stone Lake is owned by Pattie Marshall and bred by Sheri Miller, who stands Escondido Beach at her farm in Shipshewana, Ind. Tony Cunningham trains the talented chestnut gelding, who is now five for seven lifetime. The start in the Greene Derby Trials was his first of 2021.
Also heading to the Greene Derby final is Jess Bringin It On, winner of the first trial. The Jess Zoomin filly, owned by Julia Rae and Tyler Martin, also got the early advantage out of the gate and never looked back, striding out to a one-length win at the finish in a time of :18.024 for jockey Cesar Esqueda. Younger brother Erik Esqueda made it an Esqueda exacta with a second-place finish aboard Beach Front while Secret Eyes and Jose Ruiz finished third.
Another longshot on the board, Jess Bringin It On paid $12.20 for the win. Paul Martin trains the bay filly bred by Mark and Teresa Myers and was an $11,000 yearling purchase from the QHRAI Speed Sale in Indiana. It was her first career win in nine career tries and her second start of 2021.
The top 10 qualifiers heading to the Greene Derby Final, with jockey and time, include: WH Imastreakinbeach (Jose Ruiz, :17.736); Stone Lake (L. Daniel Martinez, :17.795); Beach Blast (Sammy Mendez, :17.837); Beach Diva (L. Daniel Martinez, :17.907); Jess Bringin It On (Cesar Esqueda, :18.024); Mitey Persuasive (Gustavo Laurianis, :18.042); Beach Runaway (German Rodriquez, :18.096); Beach Stone (Cesar Esqueda, :18.197); Beach Front (Erik Esqueda, :18.200) and Ashwins Valentine (Oscar Macias, :18.248). Trainer Tony Cunningham will saddle three in the final (Stone Lake, Beach Diva, Beach Front) while Paul Martin (Beach Bast, Beach Stone) and Randy Smith (Beach Blast, Beach Runaway) will saddle two. Of the 10 in the final, seven are by longtime leading sire in Indiana Escondido Beach.
Six Saturdays have been earmarked for all-Quarter Horse racing in 2021. Each of the programs will begin at 10AM and extend into the afternoon at Indiana Grand. The dates for all-Quarter Horse racing are June 5, July 3, July 24, Aug. 14, Sept. 4, and Oct. 9. Also, Indiana Grand will host two regional qualifiers for the Bank of America Challenge Monday, Sept. 20. The John Deere Juvenile Challenge and the Q-Racing Video Distaff Challenge will hold trials on Sat. Sept. 4. The events are a precursor to the 2022 Bank of America Challenge, which will be held in Indiana for the first-time next season.