2015 Big Fresno Fair Racing

Big Fresno Fair

1121 S. Chance Avenue
Fresno, CA 93702
  • Racing Office:  (559) 253-7383
  • Fax:  (559) 650-3226
  • Main Office:  (559) 650-3247
  • Toll Free:  (866) 400-3247


***Includes Fair Admission***
Kids (ages 6-12) - $5.00
Adults - $8.00
Seniors - $7.00
*FREE for ages 5 and under

Clubhouse Admission: $5.00
Grandstand Reserved Seating (general): $4.00
Grandstand Season Box Seat: $5.00/seat/day

General - $5.00
Preferred - $8.00
Chance Premier - $12.00

Racing Info

Racing Dates:

2015 The Big Fresno Fair Executives

Board of Stewards

- Safety Steward

Board of Directors
, President
, Vice-President

Track Officials
John Alkire - Chief Executive Officer
- Director of Racing & Simulcasting
- Racing Operations Coordinator
- Racing Secretary
- Assistant Racing Secretary
- Mixed Breeds Coordinator
- Mutuel Manager
- Track Announcer / Morning Line Maker
- Paymaster of Purses
- Stable Superintendent
- Track Superintendent
- Video Production
- Track Photographer

Racing Officials
- Clerk of Scales
- Placing Judge
- Placing Judge
- Placing Judge
- Paddock Judge & Patrol Judge
- Patrol Judge/Film Analyst
- Horse Identifier
- Starter
- Clerk of the Course, Thoroughbreds
- Clerk of the Course, Emerging Breeds
- Horseshoe Inspector
- Clocker & Timer

, DVM - Track / Race Veterinarian
, DVM - CHRB Veterinarian
Member, California Authority of Racing Fairs Christopher Korby, Executive Director

2015 The Big Fresno Fair News and Current Events





Man, what a race!


Quindici Man ran down Slew the Man in the final strides to capture the Bull Dog Stakes on closing day of the 2010 season at the Big Fresno Fair.


Perfectly timed by jockey Ricky Frazier, Quindici Man rallied from last to first to score a half-length decision.  Autism Awareness was third.  The running time for 1 1/8 miles was 1:50.20.


All Saint set a very moderate pace in the Bull Dog while being closely tracked by Slew the Man.  As the field headed into the far turn, jockey Russell Baze pushed the button on Slew the Man, who took control of the race while Quindici Man began to rally from last.


Slew the Man had a three length at the eighth pole but was unable to fend off Quindici Man.  It was another 7 1/2 lengths back to Autism Awareness who outfinished Candy Store for third.


"I was a little bit concerned about the slow pace," said winning trainer Craig Lewis.  He's a blue collar working man's horse, a scrapper.  I'm very pleased with his effort today."


Quindici Man won for the seventh time in 27 starts and has now earned in excess of $331,000.  The 4-year-old son of Came home is owned by Six - S Racing Stable.


Earlier on the program, Bar JF Hot Ticket won the Mule Gold cup over Bar JF Red Ticket.  Jet Fuel was third and Sarah Nelson finished fourth.  Bar JF Hot Ticket won for the 42nd time in her 50th start and finished 2010 with nine wins and a second in 10 starts.


Oh Jess Fly cruised home to capture the Fresno Quarter Horse Futurity.  Trained by Yanet Rodriguez, the 2-year-old is owned by Elida Orozco and Rodriguez.





Magnificent Blend won for the fifth consecutive time in Saturday’s CARF Starter Race at the Big Fresno Fair, and he had to overcome some interference to do it.  Longshot Defying Logic loomed up alongside the favorite and was lugging in through the lane, forcing the 6-year-old gelding into a very tight spot along the rail.  Despite the trouble, Magnificent Blend fought bravely under Frank Alvarado to prevail by a head, covering the six furlongs in 1:10.33.


Not only has he won five straight races, but Magnificent Blend has done some traveling to keep the win streak intact.    After losing his comeback from a layoff of more than a year, he lost by a head at Golden Gate Fields in June.  He then won at Pleasanton and Sacramento, and was claimed away from trainer John Martin the day he won at Cal Expo.  He won for trainers Art Sherman and Blake Heap at Del Mar, and Martin and Stewball Stable claimed him back for $16,000. He paid them back immediate dividends by earning $18,100 today.


Martin also won the 12th race with Crash Landing.


Trainer Ramon Pulido scored with a couple of longshots on the afternoon.  12-year-old Le Fromage rolled to an easy win in the K Cuch Jedan for Arabians in the first race, and the Pulido-trained Ebani pulled off a major upset in the sixth race.


In the popular Derby Dog Dash, Pepper won over Camouflage, with Kusu Man third.  The trifecta comprised of horse connections, as the top three finishers are owned by Becky Balistreri, Terri Eaton and Bubba Lewis.


Closing day is tomorrow, with another 13-race card scheduled.  First post is at 12:15 p.m.  The traditional closing day fixture, the Bulldog Stakes, will highlight the card.  There is a mandatory payout in the pick six on closing day, and there’s a carryover of just under $10,000.




Whispering Dixie, turning back in distance after finishing second in a one mile race here on October 7, took advantage of a wicked early pace and mowed them all down in Friday's featured CARF Starter Allowance Sprint at the Big Fresno Fair.  Suances de Espana was second, and Blazeisagamelady finished third.  The running time was 1:10.63.


Dream Spotter broke on top and was immediately challenged by Suances de Espana as those two fillies pulled well clear of the rest through an opening quarter in 22.19.  Suances de Espana put away her early pace rival on the turn, opening up nearly five lengths, but Whispering Dixie unleashed a furious rally in the stretch and won going away by 2 1/4 lengths at odds of 24-1.


Ridden by apprentice Stephanie Keever, Whispering Dixie ($51.80) has now won two of her last three races as owner Leroy Krum and trainer Quinn Howey have kept up the momentum from their successful meet at the Humboldt County Fair.


Closing weekend at the Big Fresno Fair will have many highlights.  On Saturday, the popular Derby Dog Dash will showcase small dogs racing in between the horse racing action.  Sunday is closing day, with the traditional Bulldog Stakes highlighting the program.  Post time for both days is at 12:15 p.m. and 13-race cards will be offered.





Ready for Crowds went to the front, shrugged off two challengers, then cruised through the lane to win Thursday's seventh race at the Big Fresno Fair.  Ridden by Ricky Frazier, the 3-year-old filly won by six lengths. There was a dead heat for second between Feelings and Char's A Whow.  The running time for 1 1/16 miles was 1:46.04.


Ready for Crowds sailed through an opening quarter in 24.79, and was tackled early by Serene Serena.  Miss Edyta made a brief bid on the backstretch, but both of those rivals paid the price and weakened in the stretch.


Owned and bred by Harris Farms, Inc., Ready for Crowds is now perfect in two starts since being transferred to trainer John Martin.  She has now won two of six starts overall.  Martin swept both halves of the daily double as Changing won the eighth race.


Racing resumes on Friday for closing weekend.  Post time is at 1:15 p.m. on Friday and at 12:15 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.





Idle Chatter rallied from last to first to score in Monday's featured eighth race at the Big Fresno Fair over pacesetter Dontmesroundwitjim.  Favored Stormy Surge was a non-threatening third.  The running time for one mile was 1:36.37.  The winner survived a jockey's claim of foul.

Dontmessroundwitjim set the pace and was tracked by Alabama Boy, with Augment tucked in neatly at the rail.  At the top of the lane, Dontmesroundwitjim shook loose, but Idle Chatter, rallying widest of all, took dead aim, gradually wearing the leader down in the final strides while drifting in a bit near the wire to get up by a neck.


The stewards ruled  while Idle Chatter ducked in slightly, the incident was minor and did not warrant a disqualification.


Owned by Jill Martin and trained by Melanie McDonald, the 6-year-old was ridden to victory by Barrington Harvey.


The most exciting race of the day was a three-way photo in the mule allowance, where Red Rooster got up in the final strides to defeat Sarah Nelson and Bar JF Red Ticket.  Owned by Dr. Bert Johnson and trained by Jamey Thomas, Red Rooster won for the second time this meet.


After two dark days, racing resumes for the final four days of the meet on Thursday.  First post is at 1:15 p.m.





Holding Her Ground was struggling a bit early this year in the starter allowance races at Hollywood Park, so trainer Bobby Grayson sent the 4-year-old filly to the Alameda County Fair, hoping she would improve.  The plan has worked to near perfection as the daughter of Put It Back passed the toughest test of her career in a dominant four length victory in Sunday's Harvest Stakes at the Big Fresno Fair.


Ridden by Ricky Frazier, Holding Her Ground went right to the front and certainly benefitted when expected pace rival Midnight Margarita broke slowly.  Rattling off fractions of 22.68 and 45.08, Holding Her Ground opened up at the top of the stretch and the outcome was never in doubt.  Rated Fiesty, send off as the even-money favorite on the strength of her multiple graded stakes wins, was clearly second best, and Red White and Brew was third.  The running time was 1:09.30


Holding Her Ground has now won four of her last five races, with the only loss coming in the CERF at Del Mar when she was run down by the Bob Baffert-trained Fund Raiser.  Prior to that race, she won a six furlong race on the main track and a five furlong allowance race on turf at Del Mar after the starter allowance win at Pleasanton.  The betting public continued to ignore her, sending her off as the third choice at 4-1.  Her odds in the other wins were  7/2, 26-1, and 10-1.

Racing resumes with a special Columbus Day program tomorrow.  Post time is at 1:15 p.m.





Going into Saturday's Fresno Golden Queen Distaff for Arabian fillies and mares at the Big Fresno Fair, the story was the 8-year-old Bessemer, who was looking for her third consecutive win in the race, but while it was indeed a one-horse affair, the headline belonged to P J Miss Zuby, who overwhelmed the competition with a dazzling 7 1/2 length triumph.  9-year-old Anvirlik was second, while Bessemer checked in third.  The running time for six furlongs was 1:18.76.


Expected pacesetter Galagule was off a bit slowly, then rushed up to battle for the early lead with Lely Roterra and Anvirlik, who made an earlier-than-expected move up the backstretch.  P J Miss Zuby made a decisive move around the far turn, then exploded to open up an insurmountable lead en route to victory.  Bessemer, who has obviously lost a step at age 8, was a non-threatening third after a perfect trip.


Owned by Cindy Scharli and Susan Willis, P J Miss Zuby is trained by Charles Treece and was ridden for the first time by Leslie Mawing, who also won the ninth race aboard Clever Copy.


A 6-year-old daughter of Chndaka, P J Zuby won for the fifth time in 11 starts.


Racing resumes Sunday, with a first post of 12:15 p.m.  The feature is the $50,000 Harvest Stakes for fillies and mares at six furlongs.  Rated Feisty, making her first start for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, is the 9-5 morning line favorite.  The 5-year-old mare has been campaigning on the east coast for Steve Asmussen.  Russell Baze will be aboard Midnight Margarita as the Hall of Famer makes his first appearance at the Big Fresno Fair this meet.





Hi and Goodbye tracked pacesetters Ohsokool and Sidandfrank, then finished strongly to pull off an upset at 18-1 in the ninth and featured race on Friday at the Big Fresno Fair.


Ridden by apprentice Gustavo Ortiz, the 3-year-old broke very alertly, then settled about two lengths off the dueling leaders.  Ohsokool, the even-money favorite, put away Sidandfrank at the top of the stretch, but was unable to hold off Hi and Goodbye, who gradually wore him down in the final sixteenth of a mile to score by two lengths.  Absolute Magnitude won the photo for third.


After non-threatening efforts in his first two starts, Hi and Goodbye has now rattled off back-to-back upset victories.  He broke his maiden on September 25 at nearly 14-1 odds.  Trained by Rhoda March, he is owned by Victoria Polzin, who is also the co-breeder.


Earlier on the program, trainer Sheldon Paldanius continued his winning ways during the fair season by saddling winners Easter High in the fourth race and Vegas Thief in the eighth race.  William Hedrick, longtime automobile dealer and supporter of the Big Fresno Fair, owns Vegas Thief and co-owns Easter High along with breeder Andres Hernandez.


Racing resumes at the fair on Saturday, where first post is at 12:15 p.m.  Be sure to come out early for the TOC (Thoroughbred Owners of California) seminar "What does a fast horse look like?", which will be held in the paddock area beginning at 10:45 a.m.  The first 200 attendees to arrive prior to 11:30 a.m. will receive free Secretariat hats.  Owner/breeder John Harris and trainer John Martin will be the featured speakers.





Trainer Rene Amescua knows his way to the winner's circle at the Big Fresno Fair, and he had the opportunity to visit twice more on day two of the 2010 season.


Amescua sent out Found in Dark to an easy win in the fourth race.  Ridden by Julien Couton,  the 6-year-old mare opened up seven lengths in midstretch but was geared down lane to prevail by three lengths.   In the eighth and final race, Mommy Go Too scored an easy four-length victory from off the pace under Modesto Linares.


"He (Mommy Go Too) was raised about 10 miles from here," Amescua said to TVG interviewer Joaquin Jaime before the race.  Amescua noted that Mommy Go Too would likely make another start during the fair, and that he should be even more effective around two turns.  On the subject of possibly taking another trainer's title, Amescua said "I love this fair.  It's always a lot of fun and we like to point our horses for the meet.  I've won seven or eight titles here and it's nice to get off to a good start."


Jaime, a Fresno native who works in the research department at TVG, spent the first two days of the meet here along with analyst Simon Bray as the network offered extended coverage of the fair's opening.  Bray was invited to call a race for the first time in his life.  He called the fifth race and was the recipient of rave reviews for his debut effort.


Racing resumes Friday, with a 10-race card on tap.  A large crowd is expected, as it's the first "Friday in Fresno", where many locals take the afternoon off to celebrate the local fair.  First post is at 1:15 p.m.





The parade of favorites during the fair Season continued as the Big Fresno Fair kicked off its 2010 season on Wednesday with very formful results.


Moonin Mr. Perry started the proceedings, winning comfortably as the even-money favorite in the opener for Quarter Horses.  In the first Thoroughbred race, Skyspy drew off to an impressive 13-length score for perennial leading trainer Rene Amescua.


Favorites won four of the first nine races on Wednesday, and the public choice finished second in three races.


The most exciting race of the day was the second, an Arabian allowance race, as Genuine Guy put his nose down right on the money to prevail by a nose over Jucy Pickins, who appeared on his way to victory.  No Speed Limite, the 6/5 favorite, checked in third.  Trainer Helen Shelley saddled both the winner and the third-place finisher.  Martin Mayne owns Genuine Guy, who was ridden to victory by James Wooten, Jr.


Jockey Julien Couton and trainer Steve Sherman each scored twice on the program.  Couton was aboard Skyspy and the Sherman-trained Trail Beyond, who won the ninth.  Sherman also scored with Alevei in the fifth


Racing resumes on Thursday, and first post is at 1:15 p.m.    Thursday is Kids' Day, sponsored by New York Life.  Kids 12 and under get FREE admission to the fair with paid adult admission, and "The Cat in the Hat" will be in attendance.


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