Tlc Signature signs a winning note in La Plata Stakes
FARMINGTON — Snapping a five-race losing streak which included some solid efforts in a pair of stakes races, Tlc Signature inched clear in the final yards to earn a decisive score in Sunday's $75,000 La Plata Stakes at SunRay Park and Casino.
The Texas-bred son of The Louisiana Cartel broke smartly from his inside post under jockey Agustin Silva, dueled for the early lead with Runaway Witch and Cers Final Try in the first 200 yards, then had enough left in the final yards to win by three-quarters of a length over a late-running Everybodyneedsahero.
Trained by Omar Vargas and owned by Emilio Perez, Tlc Signature ran the 400 yards in a quick final time of 19.28 seconds, which was a bit more than wind-aided thanks to gusty conditions that prevailed through much of the day.
Tlc Signature earned the fourth win of his career in 15 starts, and the winner's share of the purse, more than $45,000, increases his lifetime earnings to more than $169,000.
Most recently, Tlc Signature was a close second in the West Texas Maturity at Sunland Park. Prior to that, he was second in the Lovington Stakes at Zia Park and fourth in the AQHA Challenge Championship at Albuquerque Downs last fall.
Sent off as the third choice in the wagering in the La Plata at odds of 4.10-to-1, Tlc Signature returned $10.20 to his winning backers. Post-time favorite Everybodyneedsahero ran second under jockey Noe Garcia. The exacta with the top pair returned $51.80 on a $2 investment.
Kj Frankie B finished third, with Runaway Witch rounding out the top four finishers.
Live racing resumes on Friday at SunRay Park, with trials for both the New Mexico Breeders' Futurity and the Four Corners Futurity headlining the Friday action.
In addition to Saturday's live simulcast of the running of the Kentucky Derby card from Churchill Downs, SunRay's featured race will be the Jack Cole Handicap, worth $100,000 for older New Mexico-bred thoroughbreds racing 6 1/2 furlongs.
On Sunday, the SunRay card will be highlighted by the C.O. Ken Kendrick Memorial Stakes, for 2-year-old state-bred thoroughbreds racing 4 1/2 furlongs for a purse of $100,000.
First post time at SunRay Park will be 2:15 p.m. For more information about the racing season at SunRay Park and Casino, check out the track's official page at Equibase.com.
Steve Bortstein can be reached via email at SBortstein@Gannett.com, via Twitter @DTSBortstein or on the phone at (505) 635-2680. Support local journalism with a digital subscription.