JOCKEY JUAN PULIDO’S PREDICTION OF UPSET BY HIS 30-1 HORSE COMES TRUE, WINS SPEEDHORSE GRAHAM FUTURITY WITH FACING THE FIRE
Trainer Dee Keener now believes if there is anything to believe in, it’s jockey Juan Pulido’s intuition.
When Keener spoke to Pulido before giving him a leg up on 30-1 longshot Power Fade in the Grade 1, $136,700 Speedhorse Graham Futurity, he said the rider told him, “I’m fixin’ to win this race.”
The Speedhorse Graham Futurity is the world’s richest horse race for Paints and Appaloosas.
There was nothing on paper that indicated there was any reason to do anything but scoff at such a prediction. Yes, Power Fade is a daughter of the all-time winningest Paint horse in racing, Painted Turnpike. But she had not shown any sign of that kind of talent or ability in four lifetime races. She was still a maiden, coming into her second stakes race. Her previous try she had run ninth, beaten four lengths in the $103,200 American Paint Classic Futurity in April.
“The only thing was that in that last race (the trials for this final), she was closing at the end,” said Keener.
Did she finally show why she is her daddy’s daughter?
“You bet she did,” said Keener.
In fact, Keener’s two horses in the race finished first and second as with Lota Cowboy Try Cowboy at 11-1 odds. Power Fade beat her stablemate by a half-length. For those two to beat This Wire Is Hot (5-2), Queen for Cash (2-1 favorite) and Tales U Lose (3-1) was almost unbelievable. Those three finished third, fourth and eighth despite vying for favoritism during the wagering leading up to the race.
“I really didn’t believe we could do that,” said Keener, “but nobody else did either.”
Power Fade broke her maiden in a $136,700 stakes race and paid $62.80, $35.80 and $10.40 across the board and combined with Lota Cowboy Try to return $630 on a $2 exacta. The winner raced the 350 yards in 17.635 seconds on a fast track for an 87 speed index. It was Keener’s third win in this stakes event and he now sits one behind Matt Whitekiller’s four trips to the winner’s circle in this race.
Keener’s other winners in the Speedhorse Graham Futurity were PHQ Goodbye Earl in 2016 and Texas Silk in 2014. It was Pulido’s first win in this stakes race. Owners J. Garvan Kelly and J. Lloyd Yother of Culver City, Calif., also made it to the winner’s circle in this race for the first time.
Power Fade is out of the Fade to Fame mare Fade Shot and she was bred in Oklahoma by Kelly/Yearsley Equine. She earned a winning paycheck of $51,946, earning 10 times more than she had in four other starts. The filly now has $56,956 in her racing wallet.
“We’ll take both of these horses to Tulsa at Fair Meadows,” said Keener. “They both are paid up into the Speedhorse there.”
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