Mark Allen

Mark Allen

Anne M. Eberhardt

Derby-winning Owner Allen Shines at Sunland

Mark Allen won a pair of grade II Quarter Horse stakes at Sunland

Mark Allen, co-owner of Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Mine That Bird, won two rich stakes Dec. 27 at Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino.

Allen, owner of Double Eagle Ranch, won the $131,707 Sunland Winter Quarter Horse Derby with Time for a Cigar. Allen and Double Eagle won the $224,407 Sunland Winter Quarter Horse Futurity with Templar Knight.

Under jockey Freddie Martinez, Time for a Cigar closed powerfully in the final 100 yards to win the 400-yard, grade II Derby. Time for a Cigar chased down the fast starting Jodys Money Pop and the game Christmas Cheer to gain a narrow edge in the blanket finish. The 3-year-old gelding posted a winning time of 19.18 seconds, good for a 94 speed index.

Templar Knight, under jockey Kenny Muntz, surged in the final strides to collect a head victory in the 400-yard, grade II Futurity. He sped through the 400 yards in 19.334 seconds, earning a 90 speed index.

The day’s Thoroughbred feature, the $50,000 Bold Ego Handicap at 5 1/2 furlongs, went to Stealth Cat. Despite breaking slowly, the 2008 Texas-bred Horse of the Year and champion older mare packed an energetic stretch attack to mow down Cape of Bradford in the final furlong. The 5-year-old mare blasted away to a length victory in a time of 1:03.78 for owner J. Kirk Robison of El Paso, Texas.

Allen owns Mine That Bird with Dr. Leonard Blach's Buena Suerte Ranch. Trained by Bennie "Chip" Woolley Jr., Mine That Bird ran second in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) to Rachel Alexandra after the Run for the Roses.