There was plenty of thoroughbred action over the holiday weekend, most notably at Oaklawn, which just opened its annual meeting. Aqueduct also raced for the first time in 2018 after some weather-related delays. We’ll go over five different tracks spanning both coasts and see which jockeys are thriving in their respective colonies. As always, remember to take part in FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game!
Racing finally resumed at Aqueduct on Friday (albeit for just two races) after seven straight cancellations. They managed to run three full cards over the long weekend, and Dylan Davis emerged with the most wins (six). That included a victory in Saturday’s Say Florida Sandy Stakes atop My Boy Tate.
Manny Franco, Eric Cancel and Trevor McCarthy each won three times to take joint control of second place. Franco recorded a stakes double (Firenze Fire in the Jerome and English Soul in the East View) while Cancel won the Damon Runyon with Empire Line.
Miguel Mena caught up to Shaun Bridgmohan last week to force a tie in the standings at 33 wins each. Mena won three times over the weekend, including the Duncan F. Kenner Stakes atop Yockey’s Warrior.
Mitchell Murrill won six times last week to boost his meet total to 30. He remains third, six ahead of the surging Joe Bravo, who won another five times last week. Bravo is now fourth with 24 victories.
Luis Saez bagged a dozen races during the extended racing week at Gulfstream. He now leads Tyler Gaffalione, winner of seven races last week, 54-41.
The Ortiz brothers each had productive weeks. Jose won five times, including Saturday’s Grade II Ft. Lauderdale with Shining Copper. Irad won seven times overall; five at Gulfstream and twice at Aqueduct on Monday.
Grizzled veteran Gary Stevens is part of a five-way tie for the lead after three days of racing at Oaklawn. He won four times, took down the most purse money of anyone and hit the board at a 61% clip.
C.J. McMahon, David Cohen, Jon Court and David Cabrera each won four races as well. McMahon was the only member of the leading quintet to record a stakes victory, as he took down opening Friday’s Fifth Season atop Sonneteer.
Rafael Bejarano and Evin Roman are tied for the lead at 14 wins each with three weeks in the books. Bejarano won five times last week, while Roman won six.
Tyler Baze jumped up to third (8 wins) after recording five victories last week. That included a stakes double on Sunday, as he guided Selcourt home first in the Kalookan Queen as well as Plein Air in the Astra. Drayden Van Dyke and Kent Desormeaux share Baze’s spot in the standings.
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