We’ll look at the riding happenings at four different venues from coast to coast in this week’s jockey review. Be sure to study the trends if you’re playing FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game!
There were just two days of racing at “The Big A” last week (Friday’s card was canceled due to weather), but Junior Alvarado managed to visit the winner’s circle six times, the best mark among all riders at Aqueduct. He and leading trainer Rudy Rodriguez teamed up for three of those victories. Despite riding far fewer times than most of the leaders, Alvarado is third at the meet with 29 victories.
Meet-leading jockey Dylan Davis (39) managed just one victory last week, which enabled Manny Franco (36) to cut into the deficit after a three-win weekend.
Miguel Mena was ice-cold last week, failing to record a win while hitting the board just three times (18 starts). That allowed Shaun Bridgmohan to close the gap significantly on the strength of a four-win week. Mena’s advantage is now 54-51.
Corey Lanerie (45) climbed into third after winning five races last week, including Saturday’s Dixie Poker Ace Stakes atop Trust Factor. Adam Beschizza held onto a share of third with a three-win week, while Florent Geroux matched strides to stay just one behind him.
Luis Saez (105) had a solid stanza, winning five events, including Saturday’s Gulfstream Park Sprint with Classic Rock.
Irad Ortiz Jr, who won another eight races last week, took Saturday’s marquee event, the Fountain of Youth, with 13-1 upsetter Promises Fulfilled. That was part of a stakes hat-trick for Ortiz Jr. that day. He also bagged the Canadian Turf (Hogy) and the The Very One (Holy Helena) en route to a five-win outing. Ortiz Jr. stands tied with Tyler Gaffalione, who won nine last week, for second at 72 wins.
Jose Ortiz, fourth with 54 victories, won six last week, including the Herecomesthebride (Thewayiam) and Davona Dale (Fly So High).
John Velazquez, seventh with 42 victories, continues to tote a high win percentage (26%) at Gulfstream. Riding primarily for meet-leading trainer Todd Pletcher, Velazquez recorded five scores last week, which featured a Saturday stakes double (Team of Teams in the Sand Springs and Maraud in the Palm Beach).
Evin Roman celebrated his 20th birthday on Sunday with a four-win outing from just five mounts. The late double Roman swept returned a healthy $50.20. He created some breathing room between himself and Flavien Prat for meet leader on the strength of a seven-win week, moving out to a 38-34 advantage. Prat, who still leads Roman by a hefty margin in earnings ($1.8 million to $1.2 million), won four times last week, once on each racing day.
Business slowed down for some popular riders last week, mostly due to bad weather that necessitated surface changes and scratches. Kent Desormeaux, Tyler Baze and Rafael Bejarano (third through fifth in the standings at 28, 24 and 24 wins, respectively) combined to go just 3-for-29.
Joe Talamo recorded a solid four-win week to boost his meet total to 23. He topped the $1 million earnings threshold in the process.
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