Los Alamitos Race Course closes its final spring-summer-fall meet with tonight's 29th running of the $400,000 Champion of Champions.
The 440-yard race appears wide open after defending champion Taylor Fit had to withdraw because of a foot injury suffered Dec. 2 in Texas.
Taylor Fit will be replaced by the 1998 Champion of Champions winner, Hes My Dasher.
Hes My Dasher owner Gwendolyn Eaves also sends to the post former All-American Derby and All-American Futurity winner A Delightful Dasher. Also in the race are filly Corona Kool and colt Separatist, who along with gelding A Delightful Dasher was an American Quarter Horse Assn. divisional champion. Rounding out the 10-horse field are Remington Park champion Jakes Jockmo, Vessels Maturity champion A Ransom, Los Alamitos champion Deelish, America champion Runaway Wil, and two top finishers from trials of the Z. Wayne Griffin Directors race, Chicks First Policy and Willie Wanta Dash.
Also scheduled tonight is the Quarter Horse Breeders Classic Championship and four handicapped races named for past Champion of Champions winners.
Recent state legislation allows the track to reopen Jan. 5, more than three months earlier than past years, to conduct a year-round meet. Racing will be held Fridays through Sundays until May 3, then Thursday night races begin.