Racing


Hoztile Takeover Sets The Top Mark Early In Louisiana Million Trials Friday at Evangeline Downs
Hoztile Takeover (#9) gets up over fellow qualifier Grand Feature to set the fastest time from 11 trials contest Friday night at Evangeline Downs for the $1-million Louisiana Million Futurity(RG1).

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Hoztile Takeover Sets The Top Mark Early In Louisiana Million Trials Friday at Evangeline Downs

OPELOUSAS, LA—NOVEMBER 24, 2023—Evangeline Downs held an 11-race card of trials for the restricted Grade 1 2023 LQHBA Louisiana Million Futurity Friday night. 

The finals, with the largest purse regardless of breed in Louisiana, will be contested on Saturday, December 16.

The fastest qualifier for the 2023 $1,000,000 Louisiana Million was the Guillermo Martinez trainee Hoztile Takeover in the first trial of the night.  Away in good order with jockey Ubaldo Luna, Hoztile Takeover was able to wear down early leader Grand Feature in the final yards. 

The winning margin was just a neck as both runners qualified for the Million.  The running time of :20.045 seconds for the 400-yard distance earned a speed index of 85 with a 5 mph tailwind.  The trials were contested over a fast track on a beautiful evening.

"We are very excited," said Martinez. "(Retired jockey) Ray Mayo broke him and told us to get ready as this horse had potential. He is a healthy horse and other than his tendency to get in, he always runs his race. He qualified for three futurities already this year and we were confident that he was ready. To set the fastest time was really great!."

Owned by the team of Mackenzie Kretschmer and Luis Armando Castellanos, Hoztile Takeover wins for the third time from nine career starts.  Earning $6,000 for the victory, his bankroll now stands at $110,969.  This is the fourth futurity final that he has qualified for this year. He was second in the RG1 $448,771 LQHBA Sale Futurity two races back.

Bred in Louisiana by Roland Frederick / Triple Lynn Farms, Hoztile Takeover is a 2-year-old sorrel gelding sired by multiple Grade 1 sire One Sweet Jess and is out of the Identity Theft mare Ms Pilot Id. He was an $11,5000 repurchase at the 2022 LQHBA Yearling Sale.

The Knockout Power, under jockey Jasiel Aquino, won the fourth trial by three-quarters to post the second fastest time of :20.060 seconds, an 84 speed index with a 2 mph tailwind. Trainer Victor Oviedo saddled the $40,000 LQHBA Yearling Sale graduate for owner Douglas O. Traylor.

Ken O'Brien bred the Power Jam (TB) gelding from the Apollitical Jess mare The Only Knockout. The Knockout Power has won two of eight starts and was a finalist in the LQHBA Sale Juvenile on September 2. He has earned $24,895.

Two-time 2023 futurity winner One Sweet Sugar finished second by a neck to Special Wild Train B in the fifth trial to get the 10th fastest qualifying time.

Trainer  Jesus M. Marquez saddled the four-time winner of $516,788 for owner-breeder Rogelio Marquez, Jr. The daughter of One Sweet Jess, from the Heza Fast Dash mare  Sugarshaker B, has already won the Lee Berwick Futurity(RG1) and Lassie Futurity(RG2) this season.

The biggest upset of the evening came in the seventh trial of the night as Double X Perry blew up the toteboard to the tune of $135.20 for a $2 win ticket.  

For a complete list of the 10 fastest qualifiers for the Louisiana Million, including times, sires, dams, owners, breeders, trainers and jockeys CLICK HERE. 

The second 10 fastest qualifiers from tonight's trials are preferred invites for the $50,000 Louisiana Million Juvenile that will also run back on December 16. For a list of those horses CLICK HERE

Evangeline Downs will close out the week on Saturday with a 5:35pm first post.  Three trials for the LQHBA Derby highlight the card. The Evangeline Downs Quarter Horse season runs through December 16.

For more information on Evangeline Downs, visit the track’s website at https://evangelinedowns.boydgaming.com/racing.   

Additional reporting by Martha Claussen.

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For more information on the American Quarter Horse season at Evangeline Downs, visit the track's website evdracing.com. Evangeline Downs' Twitter handle is @EVDRacing and the racetrack is also accessible on Facebook at www.facebook.com/EvangelineDownsRacing.

About Evangeline Downs
Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino and Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Evangeline Downs is in Opelousas, Louisiana, off I-49 on Cresswell Lane at Exit 18.