02/29/2012 2:26PM

Remington: Quarter Horse meet could feature world champion Cold Cash 123


Cold Cash 123, the reigning world champion Quarter Horse, is likely to start his season at the Remington Park meet that opens Friday night. The 50-date season, which continues through May 28, will feature a record purse structure and a reduced takeout on trifectas.

Cold Cash 123 is a candidate for the Grade 2, $110,000 Remington Park Challenge Championship on May 6, said his trainer, Sleepy Gilbreath. Trials for the race are April 20. Another race Cold Cash 123 could be considered for is the Grade 1, $250,000 Remington Park Invitational Championship on May 27.

“He’s close to ready to run,” said Gilbreath.

Gilbreath also trains Ochoa, the champion 2-year-old of 2011 who dominated last year’s All American Futurity at Ruidoso Downs. Ochoa could also make his return to the races at Remington, possibly in the latter part of March, said Gilbreath.

Remington officials are projecting purses will average $270,000 a day this meet, up from $265,000 in 2011.

“It’s the biggest purse distribution in the history of the sport,” said Scott Wells, the president of Remington. “We’ve had increased attendance at Remington Park, and increased play in our casino.”

Remington, which has 750 electronic gaming machines, has shattered its casino-play records in the months of January and February, said Wells.

Remington’s stakes schedule is comprised of 44 stakes worth a cumulative $5 million, the richest offering being the Grade 1, $1 million Heritage Place Futurity on May 26. The race is one of three major futurities. Trials for the first one, the $325,000 Oklahoma Futurity on March 17, are Saturday night. The series includes the $750,000 Remington Park Futurity for Oklahoma-breds on April 14.

Jockey G.R. Carter, who has won nine national riding championships, is back in search of his 15th local title. Carter is Quarter Horse racing’s all-time leading jockey by mount earnings, with $56 million. And as of Tuesday, he was poised to move into second place for all-time wins, sitting at 3,335 Quarter Horse wins and needing three to surpass Danny Cardoza’s total of 3,337. The all-time win leader is Alvin Brossette, with 3,631.

Among trainers, 10-time national champ Paul Jones has a division at Remington, while the meet has also drawn horses from such trainers as Heath Reed, Heath Taylor, Raymond Vargas, and Eddie Willis. Wells said the track received requests for 3,400 stalls. It has 1,464.

The takeout on trifectas has been reduced from 25 percent to 21 percent, said Wells.