Preview Racing

Ld Is Back Heads Grade 1 Super Derby Final Tonight
Multiple stakes winner Ld Is Back will be among starters in Sunday's Grade 1 Los Alamitos Super Derby.

© Scott Martinez
Ld Is Back Heads Grade 1 Super Derby Final Tonight

LOS ALAMITOS, CA—NOVEMBER 12, 2017—Things have clicked in a positive way for Darling Farms and Jaime Gomez's LD Is Back during his sophomore campaign.

The son of Walk Thru Fire went winless in eight starts as a 2-year-old last year, but it's been a different story during his 3-year-old season in 2017.

In five outings this year, LD Is Back has posted three victories while also running fourth in the Grade 3 PCQHRA Breeders Derby, a race in which he had a very troubled journey after losing his racing path.

In his victories, LD Is Back has posted a half-length victory while breaking his maiden in his 2017 debut on July 1, pulled away early and cruised to a 1 ˝ length victory in the $25,000 Jens List Memorial Stakes and most recently he used a powerful kick to post a 1 ˝ length win in the fastest qualifying time to Sunday's Grade 1, $956,600 Los Alamitos Super Derby. This Super Derby purse is up by 25% from last year's purse.

LD Is Back will head a strong field that also includes Grade 2 Golden State Derby winner That Rico, 2016 Grade 1 Ed Burke Million Futurity winner Chazaq, 2016 Grade 1 Golden State Million Futurity runner-up Tarzanito, two-time local stakes winner Kissed By An Eagle, plus graded stakes placed runners Renewed, Look At Her, Katella Deli and talented runners Jess Mas and Billionaire Boy.

The Los Alamitos Super Derby has an invitation for its winner to the $750,000 Champion of Champions to be held on December 16.

Ridden by Rodrigo Aceves, LD Is Back trailed at the start of his Super Derby trial, but then he turned on the jets to win in a time of :19.718. His mother is the Grade 1 AQHA Derby Challenge Championship winner Prima LD, who was also the runner-up in four other Grade 1 races during her 22-race career.

"The breeding is there for LD Is Back," Gomez said. "We lost Prima LD last year. She was 17. She was an awesome racehorse and an awesome producer. She was also the mother of LD Fire, a Grade 1 winner at Los Alamitos and a full-sister to LD Is Back"

LD Fire finished in a dead-heat for first in the 2009 Ed Burke Million Futurity. LD Is Back is also a half-brother of Major Moonflash, the winner of the 2015 New Mexico Classic Derby at Zia Park.

"We did minor surgery on LD Is Back after his 2-year-old campaign and he's come back in unbelievable form," Gomez said. "He's such a powerful finisher. He finished so well in this race, but he also finished extremely well in the PCQHRA Breeders Derby. He didn't win the Breeders Derby, but he had an awesome finish in that race."

Gomez will saddle two other horses in the Super Derby final in Dutch Masters III's Chazaq and Paul Blanchard and Dutch Masters III's Katella Deli.

Trained by Elena Andrade for Burns Ranch and Oscar Andrade, Jess Mas comes in as the second fastest qualifier following an upset victory over Chazaq and Tarzanito. Juan Ramirez will ride Jess Mas.

"After she's qualified to stakes races in the past, we've had to find another jockey for the final," Andrade said.

Having Ramirez back aboard Jess Mas can only help the filly Andrade said.

"She's kind of a special horse. You have to get to know her and I think this combination just really works," she added.

Few horses in the nation are hotter than Paul Jones and Thompson Racing LLC's That Rico, a winner of five consecutive starts. Ridden by Jesus Ayala, That Rico led from gate to wire to win his trial by a half-length.

"That was a really good race all the way around," Terry Thompson said. "I think he's going to relish the distance. Early in his career, we were a little skeptical if he could go 400 yards. He's proven that he wants more yardages."

Sired by Carters Cartel, That Rico has won nine of 15 career starts. Bred by Double Bar S Ranch, That Rico is already a three-time stakes winner this year having won the aforementioned Golden State Derby at 400 yards, plus the Old Habits Handicap, and Independence Day Handicap.

Mark and Peggy Brown's Kissed By An Eagle was fourth in the Grade 2 Golden State Derby and won the Vandy's Flash Handicap earlier this year. He also shared the starting gate with Jess Mas in the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity last year and won the John Deere California Juvenile Challenge. The son of One Famous Eagle will be going after his eighth-career victory on Sunday night.

Courtesy of

Moonie Blues, under jockey Jesus Ayala, sailed to victory in the Wild West Futurity Sunday night at Los Alamitos Race Course.