DEXXTER KILLS IT IN WINNING LEO STAKES FOR HIS FIRST BLACK-TYPE VICTORY AFTER MANY HEARTACHES
The most shocking thing about the Grade 1, $70,960 Leo Stakes on Saturday night at Remington Park is that the winner, Dexxter, was not one of the eight previous stakes winners in the field of 12.
The 4-year-old gelding had earned $238,850 prior to his first attempt in Oklahoma City, but had never won a stakes race. He took care of that Saturday night, checking that off his bucket list.
“I have watched this horse for a couple of years and he’s a stakes horse,” said winning trainer Monty Arrossa.
That is fairly obvious when he came up huge, beating the 2018 All American Futurity winner Apocalyptical Jess, the runner-up in the Leo Stakes.
“He’s just had some tough luck in finals,” Arrossa said. “He’s a class act.”
Jockey James Flores, on his way to his third leading-rider title in a row at Remington Park, was aboard for the victory.
“I never have to tell James anything as far as instructions go,” said Arrossa. “He is an ultimate professional and knows how to ride. I just wished him the best of luck.”
Dexxter hit the wire in front of Apocalyptical Jess by a half-length for the 400 yards and stopped the timer in 19.448 seconds over the fast track for a speed index of 96.
Despite Apocalyptical Jess having made 10 times as much money in his career, Dexxter had come close to breaking through in stakes races on the West Coast. He ran third in his last race at Los Alamitos on Dec. 13 in the Southern California Derby. He was also the runner-up in the Big Lew Handicap and the Dillingham Handicap, both at Los Al.
“Those were some of the best races in California,” said Arrossa. “It looks like we’ll enter him next in the Remington Park Debbie Schauf Memorial Championship and try to point him toward the Champion of Champions at Los Al. This has been a dream come true coming to Remington. We are so thankful for this track’s support of the horsemen. I’ll be back.”
Dexxter is owned by Dunn Ranch of Wynnewood, Okla., and Valeriano Racing Stables of Perryton, Texas. Valeriano also won this race last year with LD is Back. It was the first win in this race for Dunn Ranch, Flores and Arrossa.
Dexxter, off at 6-1 odds, returned $15.40, $6.80 and $4.40 across the board. Amazingly, the All American Futurity winner from two years ago was basically ignored by the betting public at 8-1 odds. The $2 exacta paid $104.80.
Dexxter earned $40,422 for his first stakes win. He is a son of Corona Cartel, out of the Tres Seis mare Tres of Linda and was bred in Utah by McColee Land & Livestock.
Valiant Tiberias (7-2) finished third, one length behind the winner. The 8-5 betting favorite, Mi Amor Secreto, was banged coming out of the gate and never got into the race, finishing seventh.
The Leo Stakes is named in honor of one of Quarter Horse racing’s foundation sires. Leo, an AQHA Hall of Fame member, stood the bulk of his long stallion career in Perry, Okla., where a life-size statue commemorates him to this day. Leo was owned for the final decades of his life by Bud Warren.
Remington Park racing continues Sunday night, with no public spectators. The 10-race program is underway at 6pm-Central.
Tracked by more than 163,000 fans on Facebook and more than 10,400 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $242 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 presents the 2020 American Quarter Horse, Paint and Appaloosa Season through May 30. Visit remingtonpark.com for free racing selections for every program.