04/28/2005 12:00AM

Cal juvenile futurity trials begin


The California futurity season starts at Los Alamitos on Saturday night with maiden-race winners leading the entrants in eight trials to the Grade 1, $262,900 Kindergarten, the year's first futurity in California.

The juveniles with the 10 fastest times will qualify for the 300-yard Kindergarten on May 14.

Trainer Scott Willoughby has two maiden winners, Love My Corona and Chicks First Fantasy, who could step forward and become Grade 1 futurity qualifiers. Love My Corona raced 300 yards in a quick 15.60 seconds to win a maiden race on April 8. On the previous night, Chicks First Fantasy won her career debut with a 15.83-second time.

Though early-season futurity trials are unpredictable, 300-yard maiden-race winners Higher Fire, Finding Nemo, Gold Nugget Rd, A Hawkin Cake, and Two Corona Special have shown promise.

Higher Fire won a maiden race in 15.56 seconds on April 14, the fastest 2-year-old time this year at Los Alamitos.

Finding Nemo found won on April 15, by a half-length, in 15.64 seconds.

Gold Nugget Rd was erratic at the start of his first start, on April 10, but jockey J.R. Ramirez got him lined out and he sped to a 2 1/4-length win in 15.69 seconds.

Four-time champion jockey Joe Badilla, who recently acquired his trainer's license, will saddle A Hawkin Cake, a 1 1/4-length maiden winner in 15.83 seconds.

Two Corona Special had a rough start and then lugged in on April 8, but rallied to win by one length in 15.82 seconds.

Heritage Trials at Remington

Blue Ribbon Futurity winner Feature Macy and Remington Park Futurity runner-up My Girl Jessie head two days of trials to the Grade 1, $550,000 (estimated) Heritage Place Futurity on Saturday and Sunday at Remington Park.

The five fastest horses on each day of the Heritage Place Futurity trials qualify for the May 21 finals.

Also on Sunday, Blue Ribbon Derby winner Field Advantage runs in the Grade 1, $125,000 (estimated) Heritage Place Derby trials. The derby finals also is on May 21.

Feature Macy and My Girl Jessie will race in trials on Sunday night.

Feature Macy was 57-1 in the Blue Ribbon Futurity after finishing second in her Blue Ribbon trial, but finished strongly in the Grade 2 Blue Ribbon to win by a neck.

My Girl Jessie has seconds in each of her two career starts, but has earned $43,271, thanks mainly to her runner-up finish to Crater Lake in the Remington Park Futurity.

In the Heritage Place Derby trials, Field Advantage comes off two straight wins, including a neck victory in the Blue Ribbon Derby as the 5-2 favorite.

Laddies and Lassies at Delta

The top three finishers in the Grade 2 Mardi Gras Futurity - Magic Shiney, Streakin Patriot, and Hez Jet Black - meet again in the $162,000 Laddie Futurity for Louisiana-bred colts and geldings on Sunday at Delta Downs.

Magic Shiney won the Mardi Gras Futurity by a nose over Streakin Patriot. Then Magic Shiney won his Laddie Futurity trial by 2 1/2 lengths. Heza Jet Black, third in the Mardi Gras, is the fastest qualifier to the Laddie with a 16.88-second time for the 330 yards.

Also on Sunday, fastest-qualifier Atoast to Daqueen heads the field in the $154,500 Lassie Futurity for statebred fillies.

Atoast to Daqueen got her second consecutive victory when she won her Lassie trial by a half-length in 17.13 seconds.