11/11/2012 9:18AM

Lone Star: Valiant Lil Lady to quick for foes in Texas Classic Futurity


Valiant Lil Lady broke on top and never looked back to win Saturday night’s $1 million Texas Classic Futurity by a head over Big Boi. It was another half-length back in third to Pyc Kant Katch Me.

The Grade 1 race for Quarter Horses was the richest race in Texas and it closed out the meet at Lone Star Park near Dallas. Also on the card, Ochoa, the leading money earner among Quarter Horses, was upset by stablemate The Long Knife in the Texas Classic Derby, finishing fifth to the winner, who paid $61.20.

Valiant Lady ($6.80) showed quickness from the start in the Texas Classic Futurity, separating herself from her rivals by more than a length at one point in the 400-yard race. In the late stages, he she held off Big Boi while covering the distance on a track rated fast in 19.61 seconds.

Cody Jensen rode Valiant Lil Lady for Byron Gardner and trainer Judd Kearl. For her first stakes win, Valiant Lady earned $432,533. She is a daughter of the First Down Dash stallion Valiant Hero.

Ronnie James, the fastest qualifier and favorite for the Texas Classic, finished fifth. 

* The Long Knife secured his first stakes win when he drove to a three-quarter length win over Sarah Must in the Grade 1, $377,219 Texas Classic Derby. Ochoa, who broke last in the 440 yard race, rallied for fifth, beaten two lengths. It was his first loss at the distance. The Long Knife won in 21.55 seconds. Ramon Sanchez rode The Long Knife for Steve Denny and trainer Sleepy Gilbreath.