Jockey Spotlight: Corey Lanerie

Corey Lanerie may not have Triple Crown or Breeders’ Cup trophies on his shelf, but he’s been one of the nation’s most consistent riders for the last two decades. Since 1994, Lanerie has won at least 100 races a year and has won numerous riding titles at Lone Star, Sam Houston, Keeneland and Ellis Park in addition to an astounding 10 titles at Churchill Downs.

“I try to ride him on all my horses,” trainer Dale Romans said of Lanerie in the Louisville Courier-Journal. “I think that he has truly elevated his game in the last couple of years. He’s gotten the opportunity to ride better horses, get his own confidence level up and show what we can really do.”

Lanerie got his start in the ‘bush tracks’ of Louisiana, and his rough-and-tumble origins are on display when he brazenly tries to squeeze through at the rail on his horse.

“Some guys say I’m stupid – I’m crazy,” Lanerie told the Courier-Journal. “I ride the race, and when I see a spot to go, I just go.”

Lanerie is only just getting some rides in bigger races like the Kentucky Derby in the last few years. He discussed his prior his lack of success in such events in a recent interview with Kentucky.com.

“A lot of my business was more in the cheaper races. I won a lot of races, but when it came to the stakes races, I’d ride a long shot or I didn’t have the quality mounts in a stakes race. I guess that’s why I never had anything make it to the Derby but I had a lot of everyday business. Finally I broke through and had a couple of decent stake winners and now it just seems to be falling into place.”

Lanerie won his first Grade I in the 2009 Ashland Stakes at Keeneland, and won the race again this year with a perfectly-timed rally under Weep No More, one of his top current mounts. Lanerie is also the regular rider of Cherry Wine, who earned him his first in-the-money finish in the Triple Crown series with a runner-up effort in the Preakness.

Lanerie is also one of the most respected jockeys in the country. He was chosen by his colleagues to receive the George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award in 2014, an annual honor that goes to the rider who ‘demonstrates high standards of personal and professional conduct, on and off the racetrack.’

“It’s an honor,” Lanerie told the DRF upon receiving the award. “I’m happy to realize people seem to like you for who you are. It’s a great feeling.”

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