Del Mar’s fall meet got underway this weekend, while Aqueduct dived into its first full week of many more to come. We’ll take a look at the bi-coastal action here, highlighting key jockey performances. Be sure to take this information into account when playing FanXT’s Daily Fantasy Jockey game!
Manny Franco has built a 10-6 lead on Irad Ortiz Jr. eight days into the fall meet at Aqueduct. He won seven times over the five-day racing week, which included a Friday hat-trick. Ortiz Jr. managed four wins, including one in the Staten Island division of the New York Stallion Series aboard much-the-best Highway Star, as well as several additional ITM finishes. As a result, Ortiz Jr. has now hit the board in 79 percent of his starts at “The Big A.”
Luis Saez is tied with Ortiz Jr. for second after winning four times last week as well. He scored in the off-the-turf Atlantic Beach Stakes on Saturday (Backtohisroots) before placing in both the Stewart Manor (Guacamole) and Staten Island (Starlite Mission) on Sunday.
John Velazquez jumped into the fray after missing most of opening weekend, winning five times from 17 starts. That included a Thursday hat-trick in which regular client Todd Pletcher trained two victors. Velazquez is in the midst of a five-way tie for fourth.
Geovanni Franco was the winningest rider of the first four days at the Del Mar fall meet. He found the winners’ circle six times and placed in the Let It Ride Stakes aboard Calexman.
Sitting in second (but first in earnings) is Flavien Prat with four victories. The recent Santa Anita riding champ took Sunday’s Betty Grable Stakes atop Spiced Perfection.
Four riders are tied for third at three wins; Drayden Van Dyke, Joe Talamo, Ruben Fuentes and Kent Desormeaux. Van Dyke won Monday’s Desi Arnaz with the promising Chasing Yesterday. Talamo and Fuentes brought home a pair of stakes longshots; Risky Proposition and Talamo took Saturday’s Let It Ride, while Fuentes scored with Escape Clause in the Kathryn Crosby.
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