07/21/2010 1:01PM

Balgo Racing Team keeps on winning at Los Alamitos


An outstanding spring for Jose Gonzalez’s Balgo Racing Team earlier this year is continuing this summer at Los Alamitos.

In May, Balgo Racing won the Kindergarten Futurity with West Coast Hawk. Last Saturday, the stable’s Hot Hitter was the fastest qualifier in time trials for the $428,000 Governor’s Cup Futurity on July 31. In addition, Balgo is sending recent Los Alamitos winner Breanna Moon to Ruidoso Downs in New Mexico for the time trials for the All American Futurity in August.

Hot Hitter, trained by Felipe Quintero, ran 350 yards in 17.417 seconds under jockey Juan Andrade, finishing a half-length in front of Moppet, the fourth-fastest qualifier. Hot Hitter’s older half-brother, Hard Hitting, won the 2008 Governor’s Cup Futurity and 2009 Governor’s Cup Derby but was not campaigned by Balgo or Quintero.

Hot Hitter’s trial win was his first career victory in three starts, preceded by second-place finishes in a maiden race and a trial for the Ed Burke Million Futurity earlier this year. Hot Hitter did not earn a berth in the Ed Burke final in June.

Through his three starts, Hot Hitter has behaved better in each race.

“He ran pretty green in his first career start,” Quintero said last weekend. “In his last race, he ran a good race, but he still lugged out really bad. When I saw that we had drawn the rail in this trial, I was feeling okay. He ran the best from the rail, but Juan told me that he was still watching the rail tonight.”

Andrade also qualified the second-fastest qualifier, Silveree, who won a trial in 17.463 seconds. Andrade must choose between the two for the final.

The Governor’s Cup Futurity will be part of an evening of stakes for California-breds. The futurity final also will include Hawks Dream Girl, Tough to Tell, Fearless And First, Girlie Man, La Panza, Sheza Shy Sahahayla, and Viansa. All will be making their first appearances in a futurity final.

◗ Peace Fire, winner of the 2009 Governor’s Cup Futurity, is among the 10 qualifiers for the $204,000 Governor’s Cup Derby on July 31.

On July 16, Peace Fire finished second to First Down King in the first of two time trials. The 400-yard race was Peace Fire’s first start since a victory in a division of the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity trials last November.

Pink Boots RM, claimed for $10,000 last August, won the other division, her fifth consecutive win for trainer Adan Farias. She set the fastest qualifying time of 19.374 seconds.