Weekly jockey review, 5/2/18; Ortiz brothers top early Belmont standings

We’ll look at the results from Belmont’s opening weekend as well as Keeneland’s closing stanza in this week’s jockey review. Be sure to note which jockeys are excelling if you’re playing FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game!


Jose Ortiz emerged with a one-win lead after opening weekend at Belmont despite his older brother, Irad, taking more than double the mounts he did.

The younger sibling won two races each on the Saturday and Sunday cards. That included a stakes score in Sunday’s License Fee atop Lady Alexandra. Those four victories came from just 10 starts, while Irad Ortiz Jr. won three times from 22 mounts. Among those victories for Ortiz Jr. was Friday’s Affirmed Success Stakes aboard Eye Luv Lulu.

John Velazquez and Manny Franco also won three times on opening weekend. Velazquez won the only stakes of the pair taking Saturday’s Elusive Quality atop Blind Ambition.


Florent Geroux narrowly beat Jose Ortiz for leading rider honors at the Keeneland spring meet with 19 total victories. Ortiz made a late charge, winning four times over the final three days, but Geroux’s lone tally on Thursday was all he needed to hold Ortiz off. However, Ortiz was a runaway winner in purse money earned ($1.66 million to $979k).

Corey Lanerie won four times over the final stanza to secure third with 16 overall tallies. He was one clear of Joel Rosario, who won three times last week.

Adam Beschizza, fresh off his first full U.S. meet at the Fair Grounds, took fifth with 11 wins in all. That included a triumph in the final stake of the meet, Friday’s Bewitch, with Mom’s On Strike.

Santa Anita

Flavien Prat is in familiar territory as the leading rider at Santa Anita. He won seven times last week, including Saturday’s Santa Barbara Stakes atop Queen Blossom, to get to 13 wins for the meet. He’s currently winning at a robust 30% clip.

Geovanni Franco continued his strong spring/summer meet showing with a four-win week, getting to second on the leaderboard with eight victories.

Drayden Van Dyke and Franklin Ceballos each won three to stay tied for third, each with seven for the meet.

Joe Talamo won three, including the Californian with Dr. Dorr, to get to fifth in the standings at six wins. That ties him with veteran Stewart Elliott and apprentice Asa Espinoza. Elliott was shut out last week while Espinoza had perhaps his best stanza ever, winning four times.

Tyler Baze, trying to put a slow start behind him, won a trio of races, including Sunday’s San Simeon with Belvoir Bay. He’s close behind at five wins overall.

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