06/07/2013 1:32PM

Los Alamitos: Five Bar Cartel may have timing edge


It will take more than five hours to run the 14 time trials for the Ed Burke Million Futurity at Los Alamitos on Sunday evening.

Five Bar Cartel starts in the first race for trainer Danny Montes, and he is one of two runners on the evening for the 33-year-old trainer. The colt won his career debut in a 300-yard maiden race in a quick 15.39 seconds at Los Alamitos on May 19, giving Montes confidence for Sunday’s race.

The hard part will be waiting through the evening for the other results.

“It will be a long day,” Montes said.

The horses with the 10 fastest times in the 350-yard trials, regardless of finishing position, will qualify for the $1 million-estimated final on June 23. Montes expects Five Bar Cartel to earn a berth.

“I think I can,” he said.

He considers the 5:30 p.m. post time for the first trial to be an advantage for Five Bar Cartel. The first seven trials will be run before sunset, with the last race scheduled for 10:45 p.m. Some Quarter Horse trainers argue that times are faster during daylight than after sunset.

“I like the daylight,” Montes said. “I think horses run much better during the day that at nighttime. There is a difference. I think it’s more natural for them.”

Montes has 18 horses spread in three locations – six at Los Alamitos, 10 on a local farm, and two at Les Bois Park in Idaho. He has never won a seven-figure futurity, but did win the Vessels Maturity with Blues Man Too in 2010.

In Sunday’s sixth race, Montes starts Wings Like Eagles, who was fifth and third in maiden races in April and May.

In other divisions, Hot Capuccino and Docs First Fire, third and sixth in the Kindergarten Futurity on May 19, start in the second race; Quirky, a fast maiden race winner in her debut on April 12, makes her second start in the third race; She Forgives, second in the Kindergarten, runs in the fourth race; and Foose Is Loose, seventh in the Kindergarten, starts in the 11th race.

Three trainers have runners in all 14 divisions – Jose de la Torre, Jose Flores, and Paul Jones.

De la Torre won the 2012 Ed Burke Million with One Dashing Eagle, who later won the All American and Golden State Million futurities and was named the 2012 World Champion Quarter Horse.