Runnin’toluvya looms solid choice in A Huevo
Runnin’toluvya. Photo by Coady Photography.
by Ted Black
Three weeks after emerging as the best West Virginia-bred older male, Runnin’toluvya will put his six-race win streak and budding reputation on the line this Saturday when he heads a field of six in the $50,000 A Huevo Stakes at one-mile and one eighth over the Charles Town strip.
The A Huevo is carded as the seventh race on the eight-race program and scheduled to go off at 9:49 EST.
A four-year-old Fiber Sonde gelding trained by Tim Grams and owned by Grams Racing Stable (Tim & Judy Grams), Runnin’toluvya missed all of his sophomore campaign with an injury, but he has since rebounded in stellar fashion. Runnin’toluvya has won seven of eight starts this year and earned nearly $250,000, capped by a victory in the $300,000 West Virginia Breeders Classic at nine furlongs, which came on the heels of his handy score in the $50,000 Frank Gall Memorial.
Runnin’toluvya recorded his first stakes victory at age two when he captured the $75,000 Vincent Moscarelli Memorial Breeders Classic for two-year-olds, but he suffered a leg injury in the James F. Lewis, III Stakes at Laurel Park in his next start and missed his entire three-year-old season. He returned fresh and fit and scored in his four-year-old return in April, suffered a narrow setback in his next start, and has since reeled off six straight victories.
He is 3-5 on the morning line. Regular pilot Oscar Flores will ride.
While Runnin’toluvya will arrive as the hottest older male on the grounds, North Atlantic (9-5) will actually head into the A Huevo as the defending champion. A five-year-old Ghostzapper gelding trained by Jeff Runco, North Atlantic has won five of eight starts this year and earned $160,000 and enjoyed the bulk of his success in three-turn events here. He was second to Runnin’toluvya in the Classic after breaking from the deadly far outside post and will seek redemption on Saturday with Arnaldo Bocachica in the irons.
Runco will also send out Weekend Liberty (6-1), who this year has been the antithesis of North Atlantic. A five-year-old Midshipman gelding, Weekend Liberty is winless in seven winless starts this year — but has been second in six of those and third in the seventh. He now owns a 6-11-6 slate and $225,000 banked from 27 career tries. He drew the rail and will seek to end his bridesmaid status in the A Huevo as the 6-1 third choice with Gerald Almodovar up.
Awsome Faith, Little Big Sime and Siente El Viento round out the field. All are at least 12-1.