Rodriguez-Flores, Ramirez, Crowson Racing Dominate West Texas Maturity Trials
Jump Down Azoom (outside), under jockey Esgar Ramirez, setting the fastest time on Friday for the West Texas Maturity(G1) at Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino.

© Coady Photograhpy
Rodriguez-Flores, Ramirez, Crowson Racing Dominate West Texas Maturity Trials

SUNLAND PARK, NM—FEBRUARY 8, 2013—Coming off a 1-2 finish in the Sunland Park Winter Futurity(G2) last December, trainer Victor Rodriguez-Flores dominated three trial races on Friday afternoon while qualifying two horses for Crowson Racing and one for Anna Crowson to the Grade 2 West Texas Maturity. Jockey Esgar Ramirez rode all three.

The 10 fastest qualifiers will return to the Southeastern New Mexico racetrack on March 2nd and vie for the winner's share of a $95,400 purse to be run over 400 yards.

Rodriguez-Flores saddled two of the three trial winner's, including fastest qualifier Jump Down Azoom, owned by Crowson Racing. The Azoom 4-year-old covered the 400 yard course into a 25 mph headwind in :19.276 seconds to set the top mark. The brown gelding was making his first start of 2013 and came into the trial race off a Sunland Park Allowance win on December 15.

Bred in Texas by Scott and Monica Jones, Jump Down Azoom is 3-3-1 in 14 career starts and has earned just over $60,000. He is out of the First Down Dash mare Jump Down First.

Anna Crowson's Jess Cuervo won the second trial by three-quarter of a length and posted the fifth fastest time of :19.483 seconds. The Corona Cartel 4-year-old is out Jessica Ravin, by Mr Jess Perry. A finalist in the 2011 All American Futurity(G1), Jess Cuervo has put together back-to-back wins, including an impressive 1 ¾ length allowance win at Sunland Park on January 4. Bred in Oklahoma by You and Me Partners, he has earned $176,768.

The third Crowson qualifier came out of the first trial when Bugsy B finished a close third to Really A Fantasy and Our First Corona. Bielau Oaks bred the lightly raced Ocean Runaway 4-year-old from the Sixarun mare Sixarun Bug. He broke his maiden in his last start with a 1 ¾ length win on January 13, also at Sunland Park.

The second and third fastest qualifers, Tres Seis Nueve and Tf Featured Effort both came out of the last trail finishing behind Jump Down Azoom.

Juan Gonzalez trains Tres Seis Nueve for Valle Guadiana Corporation. The Tres Seis 4-year-old comes into 2013 off his best season, earning $139,000 of this $165,000 lifetime earnings last year. He was second in the Sunland Park Winter QH Derby(G3) and Hobbs America Derby(G2). Jesse Levario had the riding assignment and completed the course in :19.354 seconds.

Tf Featured Effort, a 4-year-old Feature Mr Jess horse racing for owner/trainer Jaime Dominguez also had a banner season last year, winning three of six starts while earning $107,155. Ridden by Ricky Ramirez, he came into the trials off a 4th place effort to champion aged stallion Prospect To The Top in the $350,000 Championship at Sunland Park(G1) on December 30. He stopped the clock in :19.441 seconds.

For a complete list of finalists, times, sires, dams, owners, breeders, trainers and jockeys to the 2013 West Texas Maturity CLICK HERE.

Future win wagering on this year’s Kentucky Derby is available now through Sunday. Past performances are on hand at the program stands.

The speedy African Rose is the 3-1 morning line favorite for Saturday’s featured $50,000 El Diario Handicap at six and one-half furlongs. The Bwana Charlie filly has 6 career wins and looked sensational in a recent local victory. Leading trainer Justin Evans is her conditioner. Miguel Hernandez gets the return mount.

Alydarla promises to inject plenty of speed into the race. Her jockey Casey Lambert has won 4 stakes races this season.

The $50,000 Curribot Stakes at one and one-sixteenth mile is Sunday’s main event. Global Stage leads the list of accomplished stakes winners in the route feature. Post time on Saturday and Sunday is 12:25 p.m.