07/27/2006 11:00PM

Spotlight on New Mexico-breds


Ruidoso will celebrate New Mexico-breds on Sunday when it offers a slate of 11 races, all stakes for statebreds. There will be six stakes for Thoroughbreds and five for Quarter Horses.

Among the participants are some of the best New Mexico-breds in racing, including the richest of them all, Rocky Gulch, who is entered in the $55,000 Land of Enchantment Handicap (race 6).

A 5-year-old son of Dry Gulch, Rocky Gulch is two years running the New Mexico-bred horse of the year and he has banked $850,247 from 14 wins in 27 starts. He goes into the 7 1/2-furlong Land of Enchantment as one of the favorites based on his overall record and his smart allowance win at Ruidoso July 14.

But Rocky Gulch, owned by Larry Teague and trained by Terry Walker, is not the highweight. That honor goes to Cattleman Prospect, who carries 123 pounds to Rocky Gulch's 122.

Cattleman Prospect, owned by M.H. Barrett and trained by Clay Sparks, comes off two consecutive victories, including a rallying score in the slop at Ruidoso on July 4.

Rocky Gulch has defeated Cattleman Prospect a few times, but the last time they met, April 16 at Sunland Park going a mile, Cattleman Prospect won at 23-1 with Rocky Gulch ending up seventh.

A field of 10 juvenile fillies will square off in the $113,361 Rio Grande Senorita Futurity (race 7). The 5 1/2-furlong race is led by Shezapirate, a romping winner of her debut here July 15 against some of the same rivals she faces here.

Red Lilly also won her only outing, also July 15 here.

Sizzle was second to Shezapirate in that July 15 meeting. She finished well despite a very wide trip that day and may be able to turn the tables.

Males compete in the $118,744 Rio Grande Senor Futurity (race 9) as 10 2-year-olds will run 5 1/2 furlongs. Fantasmo, brilliant at Sunland this spring and a winner at Ruidoso on July 15, will try to make his record a perfect 4 for 4, but it isn't going to be easy.

One Good Reisen, a close second to Fantasmo July 15, is back for more.

Then there is Devious Play, a winner by over eight lengths over the track on July 16, and Ocean Joe, a handy winner against some of these July 15.