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April 06, 2013


The second stakes of the 2013 Sam Houston Race Park American Quarter Horse meet featured a well-matched group of ten accredited Texas-bred fillies and mares. Shakeemdontbreakem captured the $20,000 Silestone Stakes in gate-to-wire fashion.

Bred in Texas by J.B. and Sherrie Morace, the daughter of Contend out of the Royal Shakem Mare The Marquis Queen broke her maiden one year ago at Sam Houston Race Park.  Tonight, she stepped up to stakes company for trainer Bobby Martinez and crossed the wire of the 330-yard dash in :16.844.  Jockey David Alvarez rode the sorrel filly, who earned a speed index of 95, holding off a fast-closing charge from Sweet Oblivion.

“She left good and ran a heck of a race,” said Martinez. “We were surprised at the kind of competition we ran against in this stakes.”

Jakita Investments LLC purchased the filly from Morace last year and co-owner Rick Crosby spoke highly of her talent.

“I had trouble breathing for a few minutes,” said Crosby. “We’re lucky to be here and real appreciative of the people who got us to this point. This mare is very special.”
Sweet Oblivion, a Joe Kirk Fulton homebred rallied for second under Jose Alvarez; My Angela, a Jet Black Patriot filly ran third and Thequeenhasgonenuts, who ran second in the 2012 Sam Houston Futurity,  completed the superfecta.

Shakeemdontbreakem was sent off as the third betting choice and paid $8.80, $4.20 and $3.40 across the board.  She earned $12,000 for her first stakes victory and improved her career record to three wins from four starts.

Kool Country Man Fastest Qualifier for the Bank of America Texas Challenge Championship (G1)
Sam Houston Race Park ran two trials on Friday, April 5 for the $100,000 Bank of America Texas Challenge Championship (G1).

Trainer Jonathan Castaneda is hoping for back-to-back wins in the stakes. Last year Kool Country Man won the final and ably represented Texas with a fourth-place finish in the $350,000 Bank of America Challenge Championship (G1) at Prairie Meadows last October.  

The 5-year-old son of Country Chicks Man, won his 440-yard trial in :21.766 seconds, recording the fastest time. Owned by Jose Socorro Vera, Jr. and Juan Manuel G. Barbosa, Kool Country Man was ridden by Luis Vivanco. 

Kool Country Man is a special horse for the 24-year-old Castaneda, who resides in Houston, just 15 minutes from Sam Houston Race Park. His victory in the 2012 Bank of America Texas Challenge was the first Grade 1 of Castaneda’s career.

“We are very proud of him,” said the young trainer. “Since last year, he has matured and is a true stakes horse.  We’ve given him a little more time between races and are hoping for good luck in the final.”

In addition to Kool Country Man, Castaneda also qualified Jessa Kool Perry also bred by Ramiro Lopez and Bob Gaston.  For a complete list of the ten fastest qualifiers, click on

The final is set for Saturday, April 20 and the winner will earn a berth to the $350,000 Bank of America Challenge Championship (G1). The 2013 Bank of America Challenge Championships will take place at Los Alamitos in Cypress, California on Saturday, November 9.

Sam Houston Race Park is Houston’s premier racing and entertainment facility, located just 15 minutes from downtown Houston, and offers a variety of attractions including 16 recently renovated luxury suites overlooking the race track, The Pavilion Centre, and award-winning dining options at the Winner’s Circle Restaurant and the Champion Energy Services Jockey Club. For more information on upcoming shows, events and tickets, please visit

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