As the marquee winter meets draw to a close, let’s take a look at which jockeys can still lay claim to the leading rider title, and which are currently on a hot streak. Be sure to put this information to use when playing FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game!
Irad Ortiz Jr. put a bow on a tremendous inner dirt meet with a five-win Sunday at Aqueduct. He won eight races overall last week to boost his total to 58, 11 clear of Manny Franco in second. Ortiz Jr. emerged with the most purse money earned as well and hit the board at a staggering 69% clip.
Kendrick Carmouche, who finished third with 44 wins, won a pair last week. That included Saturday’s Cicada Stakes on Bluegrass Flag.
Cornelio Velasquez ended the inner meet on a high note, winning five races from 11 mounts. That included a sweep of Sunday’s early double.
The Championship Meet ends this Sunday, and Luis Saez has a stranglehold on the leading rider title with 98 wins. He’s 12 ahead of Paco Lopez despite Lopez winning five last week.
Tyler Gaffalione had a great week, and not just at Gulfstream. He won six at the Florida oval to get to 60 wins and jumped into third ahead of Nik Juarez. Gaffalione also won Turfway’s Spiral Stakes on Saturday on Fast And Accurate and potentially landed himself a Kentucky Derby mount. Gaffalione has never ridden in “the Run for the Roses.”
Meet leader Flavien Prat went to Dubai for the World Cup (where he finished sixth on Hoppertunity), enabling Tyler Baze to make up ground last week. Baze won a trio, including the Grade II San Luis Rey Stakes on Itsinthepost, but still trails Prat 52-46.
Rafael Bejarano had a busy week, winning six races while settling for second in the San Luis Rey on Syntax. With 31 wins at the meet now, he’s just one behind third-place Kent Desormeaux.
Tiago Pereira took advantage of the absence of some of SoCal’s leading riders by winning three races last week. Chief among those was his victory in the Dream of Summer Stakes on Skye Diamonds.
Alex Canchari has suddenly thrust himself into the discussion for leading rider with a six-win week (29 mounts) at Oaklawn. He now has 34 victories and is tied for third with Ricardo Santana Jr. Giovanni Franco owns the leading jockey honors (38 victories) going into the new racing week with Ramon Vazquez second (35).
Luis Contreras continues to be the hot hand in Hot Springs, AR. He won another six races from 25 mounts to boost his meet total to 18 from 92 mounts.
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