01/09/2013 3:27PM

Los Alamitos: Tres of Linda starts year with Charger Bar victory

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The breeding of the Quarter Horse filly Tres of Linda was a match made on the Internet.

Owners Christian and Ru Anna Singletary became acquainted with Oklahoma breeder Joleen Hales through a Quarter Horse racing website. The three of them met in person at horse sales and spent time together at the races in Ruidoso, N.M.

During one of those meetings, the Singletarys and Haleses decided to breed the Singletarys’s mare Lindas Dasher to Tres Seis, a stallion to which the Haleses owned a breeding season.

The resulting foal was Tres of Linda, who won her first major stakes in the $100,000 Charger Bar Handicap at Los Alamitos last Sunday evening.

“She just gave us a great start for the year 2013,” Christian Singletary said.

Trained by Scott Willoughby and ridden by Rodrigo Aceves, Tres of Linda won the 400-yard Charger Bar for fillies and mares by a head over Thisfeatureeisspecial. Tres of Linda ($21.80) was timed in 19.77 seconds. She has won 5 of 11 starts and $142,061.

“She ran the best race she’s ever run,” said Willoughby, 46. “This is the toughest bunch of fillies in the country.”

The Charger Bar was Tres of Linda’s second major stakes start in the last three months. Tres of Linda qualified for the $1 million Los Alamitos Super Derby in November, but could only finish fifth as a 35-1 outsider, 1 1/2 lengths behind winner Deniro. The Charger Bar was her next start.

“She ran a good race in the Super Derby,” Willoughby said. “She stumbled at the start and ran with them for the first 300 yards, but those tough boys were too much for her at the end.”

The win in the Charger Bar will lead to a start at the highest level for Tres of Linda. Willoughby said she will be pointed to the Los Alamitos Winter Championship against older horses. The trials are Jan. 27, with the $200,000-projected final on Feb. 17. The winner receives an automatic berth to the Champion of Champions in December.

The trials could draw Rylees Boy, who won the Champion of Champions last month. Even with a strong field, Willoughby said that Tres of Linda has earned a chance at that level.

“We’ve had to take our time with this filly,” he said. “She just needed a little maturity. We’ll see how she does there.”