Chuck Stojan, after this weekend, may have a full load of quarter horses to take down to Albuquerque, New Mexico in October.
The long-time local owner already has one horse that has qualified for the Bank of America Challenge Championships – the most prestigious quarter horse championship in North America - in the American city after two B of A finales at The Horses At Evergreen Park and this Friday (Aug. 23) he has horses entered in the final three of five Challenge regional championships at J.D.A. Raceway this summer.
On July 28 on J.D.A. Raceway his horse, Getit Hot, won $23,521 of a $48,003 purse with a first-place finish in the 400-yard Adequan Derby Challenge. The same day a horse named Gone To Be Bright, owned by Gonetothebrightside Syndicate, captured the other B of A regional championship race – the 875-yard Evergreen Park Distance Challenge. Both horses are trained by William Leech.
Those two races started the five-event Bank of America regional finals at Evergreen Park.
On Friday the regionals, with the trips to Albuquerque up for grabs for all winners, start with the ARC Distaff Challenge over 400 yards. Stojan's True Copy is entered and leaves from Gate 3.
Others involved include High Gloss Black (1), First Prize Cruise (2), Knotty Knita (4), Shez My Hero (5), Blink And Shes Gone (6) and Atomic Blondie (7). Purse money is $22,253 and it is for three-year-old and older fillies and mares.
On paper the four-year-old True copy is the favorite with 10 wins, five seconds and a third in 18 lifetime starts and $88,585 in career earnings. First Prize Cruise, also four, is next at 17-4-1-7 and $25,760 and four-year-old Atomic Blonde has won $24,693 after 21 races with two wins, two seconds and six third.
Next up in the B of A regional is the John Deere Juvenile Challenge with a purse of $34,595.
Stojan’s horse, Clear To See (out of Gate 7), is in tough in this one. Clear To See has a win and third in two lifetime races and earnings of $3,838 while Double Cruise (Gate 6) has two
wins and a second in three career races and $21,134 in earnings; and Suits (Gate 8) has won $7,891 with a win and third in six races.
Others in the race, which is over 350 yards and for two-year-olds, include Allthespeedyouneed (Gate 1), Quarter Sawn (2), Honeys Painted Pop (3), Eyesa Cruiser (4) and Light Footed (5).
The Bank of America Challenge finishes up the high-profile regionals at Evergreen Park.
Stojan’s entries in that race are Stripsteak, gate No. 3, and Good Kiddy, out of gate No. 4. The race is over 440 yards with a purse of $39,457 and is four three-year-olds and up.
Stripsteak has nine wins, two seconds and a third after seven career races and $44,926 in earnings while Good Kiddy is 10-1-0-4 and $7,801.
All of the horses may be chasing JD Wagon Boss, out of Gate 1. The Boss has won $62,632 in 18 career starts with seven of them wins, three seconds and three thirds.
Gone to Be Bright, the Distan
ce Challenge winner, has a 19-4-5-0 record and $27,736 in earnings and is out of No. 2 while Walters Cartel (10-1-0-5 and $5,430) leaves from No. 5 in the five-horse field.
Leech, who filled in as the trainer for the Alberta Derby at Evergreen Park winner Exactly last month, has his hands full on Friday. Besides Gone to Be Bright, he trains True Copy, Blink And Shes Gone, Light Footed (which he also owns), Clear To See, Stripsteak and Good Kiddy.
The Bank of America Challenge Championships go October 26 at The Downs in Albuquerque.
The Horses At Evergreen Park go Friday and Saturday with a 6 p.m. post and Sunday starting at 1 p.m. Sunday is Mr. Mike's Paint The Park Purple - Race For The cure! The annual pancreatic cancer awareness day at the track. There is a silent auction, Frisbee toss for a $1,000 Marlin Travel gift certificate, 50/50 and purple cookies, bracelets and drinks for sale. The day also includes a Dino Derby, sponsored by the Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum.
There is no admission fee.