J P's Gusto, who earned his maiden victory in the Willard L. Proctor Memorial Stakes, tops a field of eight 2-year-olds in the $100,000 Hollywood Juvenile Championship (gr. III) July 5 on the Hollywood Park Cushion Track.
Owned by Gem Inc. and trained by David Hofmans, the son of Successful Appeal won by 4 1/2 lengths over heavily favored Belleofthebridle in the ungraded Proctor May 31. The authoritative win came three weeks after he had finished a troubled sixth as the 9-5 favorite in his debut. A $52,000 yearling purchase at Keeneland last September, J P’s Gusto has earned $37,360.
Joe Talamo, who was second aboard Zip Quik in this race last year and with Leonides in 2007, retains the mount in the six-furlong event. Looking to give Hofmans his first win in the Hollywooe Juvenile, J P’s Gusto will carry high weight of 120 pounds.
Three of those who finished behind J P’s Gusto in the Proctor are back in the Juvenile Championship—Edgewick Road, Tappin Tough, and Leon Ayala. Of the trio, Edgewick Road fared best. He finished third, but was beaten 13 3/4 lengths.
There are also two participants entering after impressive debut wins.
Marvin's Magic, a son of Aptitude, won in the slop at Emerald Downs on June 6, leading throughout at 4 1/2 furlongs. He is owned in partnership by breeder Chris Randall and trained by Frank Lucarelli.
Western Mood's initial win was at Hollywood. The West Acre colt rallied after a slow start to win at five furlongs on June 12. He is owned by George Todaro and trainer Jerry Hollendorfer.
$100,000 Hollywood Juvenile (gr. III, Race 8, 4:35 p.m.), 2YO, 6 Furlongs (Cushion Track) PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Leon Ayala (CA), F Valdez, 117, O L Garcia
2. Marvin's Magic (WA), M E Smith, 117, F Lucarelli
3. Minutesandtouches (KY), M Garcia, 115, T Knight
4. River's Chapel (KY), C Santiago Reyes, 117, W Solis
5. Tappin Tough (CA), D R Flores, 117, W Solis
6. J P's Gusto (KY), J Talamo, 120, D E Hofmans
7. Edgewick Road (CA), T Baze, 117, M Harrington
8. Western Mood (FL), J Rosario, 117, J Hollendorfer