AQHA CHAMPION TRAINER FOR 2021, JASON OLMSTEAD, SENDS OUT FASTEST QUALIFIER, POLITICAL SPEED, IN REMINGTON DERBY TRIALS
Political Speed has a conservative bankroll compared to many of the other 36 horses that competed in Sunday’s Remington Park Derby trials, but that didn’t stop this gelding’s hooves from being the fastest qualifier for the finals.
This 3-year-old gelded son of prolific sire Apollitical Jess, out of the Corona Cartel mare Fast Prize Corona, stopped the timer 400 yards in :19.867 over a fast surface for the fastest time of the four trials. Jockey Edwin Escobedo pushed him to victory for owners Kim Paulsen and Tom Maher of Pierre, S.D. and trainer Jason Olmstead in the fourth and final trial of the day. Olmstead was awarded with a championship trophy by the American Quarter Horse Association as top trainer in the country in 2021. Political Speed was bred in Oklahoma by Weetona Stanley.
Despite only earning $54,520 thus far in his career, he will go into Restricted Grade 2 $270,535 Remington Park Derby on Saturday, April 16, with the fastest time on the books for the 10 qualifiers. In comparison, Just a Kool Boy, Dreamsville, San Lorenzo Tay, Docs Dusty Cartel and EM High Country were all well into six figures in earnings. In fact, with the $2,928 he earned for running second in his trial, San Lorenzo Tay sits at $646,670 in his bankroll. He will be the most prosperous horse in the finals despite checking in at sixth-fastest in the trials.
The wind may have played a minor factor in the qualifying. The first trial got underway with a 16-mph headwind. It calmed to 14 mph for the second, 11 for the third and finished in the fourth at 9 mph.
It was Political Speed’s fifth win in eight starts, so the average amount of earnings in his wallet has nothing to do with the horse’s desire to win. If he hadn’t hopped at the start of the $221,000 Black Gold Futurity Championship at Will Rogers Downs in Claremore, Okla., last fall, this might have been his sixth win in a row. He won an All American Futurity trial on Aug. 20 last year at Ruidoso Downs, but it wasn’t fast enough to qualify for that final. He then went to WRD and won an allowance race for non-winners of two, followed by a victory in a Black Gold futurity trial on Oct. 29. That’s when he lost all hopes of big stakes money when he hopped as the gates opened. After that, he was back on form with a trip to the winner’s circle at Remington Park in his 2022 debut among allowance horses in a race for non-winners of four career events. The trial win Sunday gave him five wins in his last six starts.
That’s not too shabby for a horse whose dam (mother) won only once in four tries in a maiden race at Remington Park. Throw that out, however, and he still is sired by a stallion that has thrown three All American Futurity winners. Apollitical Jess produced KJ Desperado (2021 All American winner), Mr Jess Jenkins (2019) and Apocalyptical Jess (2018). Corona Cartel is on the bottom side of Political Speed’s pedigree. That stallion became the sport’s second all-time leading sire before passing away in 2019. At the time of his death, his progeny earnings were more than $62 million.
In Political Speed’s trial Sunday, he engaged in a battle gate-to-wire with A Tres of Eagle and outlasted that gelding by a neck. His winning speed index, and tops in the trials was 88.The top four in that heat qualified in the top 10.
The following were the 10 fastest qualifiers with times, speed index, race number, jockey and trainer:
1) Political Speed, :19.867, 88, trial four, Edwin Escobedo, Jason Olmstead
2) Just a Kool Boy, :19.901, 87, trial two, Jimmy Brooks, Eddie Willis
3) Pevs Charley, :19:908, 87, trial three, Cristian Esqueda, Jerry Livingston
4) A Tres of Eagle, :19.910, 87, trial four, Jhaciel Soto, Eddie Lee Willis
5) Dreamsville, :19.998, 85, trial one, Jesus Salazar, Dee Keener
6) San Lorenzo Tay, :20.077, 83, trial one, James Flores, Santos Carrizales
7) Especially Jess, :20.165, 81, trial two, Raul Ramirez, Jr., Trey Wood
8) Docs Dusty Cartel, :20.167, 81, trial four, Rolando Raudales, Stacey Capps
9) EM High Country, :20.233, 79, trial four, Rodrigo Vallejo, Heath Taylor
10) Deutsch, :20.252, 78, trial three, Daniel Torres, Patrick Swan
Live racing continues next week, April 7-10, with a Thursday-Saturday first post time at 6 p.m. and a Sunday card that begins at 4 p.m.
Tracked by more than 168,000 fans on Facebook and 10,600 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $286 Million to the State of Oklahoma general education fund since the opening of the casino in 2005. Located at the junction of Interstates 35 & 44, in the heart of the Oklahoma City Adventure District, Remington Park will feature the richest futurity for state-breds, the $925,000 (estimated) Remington Park Futurity on April 16. Simulcast horse is racing featured daily at Remington Park where the casino is always open! Visit remingtonpark.com for more information.