Author: Wynn Elliott

JockeyTalk360 Awards: Gaffalione Honored With Breakthrough Jockey Of The Year Award

Tyler Gaffalione — the 2015 Eclipse Award-winning apprentice rider who this year stamped himself as a major player on the national scene — is the recipient of JockeyTalk360.com‘s 2017 Breakthrough Jockey of the Year Award, presented by Betfair/TVG. Gaffalione was selected by the panel of racing experts who vote on Jockey of the Week honors for JockeyTalk360.com, the website dedicated to promoting and celebrating the sport of horse racing by showcasing riders from across the nation and around the world. Jeff Lowich, TVG’s Director of Industry Relations, will present the Breakthrough Jockey of the Year Award to Gaffalione at the Dec. 12 awards luncheon of the annual Jockeys’ Guild Assembly sponsored by Betfair US at Las Vegas’ MGM Grand. “One of the toughest things for a young rider is to keep momentum going after losing the apprentice weight allowances,” said C.J. Johnsen, editor of JockeyTalk360.com. “Tyler this year capitalized on his opportunities to emerge as a rising star in our sport. Kudos to Tyler and his agent, Matt Muzikar, for executing a thoughtful plan to take the young jockey to the next level, building his confidence as well as physical skills and mental acumen with the goal of being a top rider for a long time.” This is the third year for JockeyTalk360’s Breakthrough Award, the past winners being Flavien Prat in 2016 and Florent Geroux in 2015. The...

Read More

JockeyTalk360 Awards: Javier Castellano Honored With Turf Jockey Of The Year Award

Javier Castellano — whose 20 graded stakes and 33 stakes overall on grass lead North America — is the recipient of JockeyTalk360.com‘s 2017 Turf Jockey of the Year Award, presented by the performance-fencing company Duralock. Castellano, who was voted into racing’s Hall of Fame this year, captured five Grade 1 races in New York, Kentucky and California, including Rushing Fall in the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf and New Money Honey in the $1 million Belmont Oaks. He also won Belmont’s Longines Just a Game on Antonoe, Santa Anita’s Frank E. Kilroe Mile on Bal a Bali and Keeneland’s Maker’s 46 Mile aboard American Patriot. His $11,253,905 in purse earnings on the grass lead North America, while his 124 victories overall through Wednesday rank No. 3. More than half his 213 victories and 62 stakes wins and almost half of his $24,304,781 in purses this season have come on the turf. Castellano, 40, was selected by the panel of racing experts who vote on Jockey of the Week honors for JockeyTalk360.com, the website dedicated to promoting and celebrating the sport of horse racing by showcasing riders from across the nation and around the world. JockeyTalk360.com editor C.J. Johnsen will present the Turf Jockey of the Year Award to Castellano at the Dec. 12 awards luncheon of the annual Jockeys’ Guild Assembly sponsored by Betfair US at Las...

Read More

JockeyTalk360 Awards: Maragh honored with Comeback Jockey of the Year Award

Rajiv Maragh — who returned to riding at racing’s top level mere weeks after being sidelined for 15 months with career-threatening injuries — received the JockeyTalk360.com’s third annual Comeback Jockey of the Year Award, presented by Horsemen’s Track and Equipment. Horsemen’s Track and Equipment president Randy Bloch presented the 32-year-old Maragh the award during the Jockeys’ Guild Assembly luncheon Tuesday, Dec. 12, at Las Vegas’ MGM Grand. The JockeyTalk360 awards are in addition to the honors handed out at the luncheon by the Jockeys’ Guild.   Maragh said he thought he was “going to die” when his mount in Belmont Park’s fifth race on July 10, 2015, landed on the jockey after clipping heels and falling. The jockey sustained eight broken vertebrae, a collapsed lung and broken ribs that left him bed-ridden for weeks and in a body brace for nine months. “I was in a bad physical and mental state for a long time,” Maragh told The (Louisville) Courier-Journal last spring. “It was frustrating. All that time, all I can really remember is pain — pain and suffering. That’s all I could remember for a year. “I had to rethink and reflect on everything in my life and see where I’m at and what I want …. When I thought about everything, all roads led back to me being a jockey. I want to do what makes me happy and...

Read More

Jockeys’ Guild Awards: Jack Fires & Tad Leggett Receive the Ron Turcotte Courage Award

Jack Fires began his riding career at the age of 17 following in the footsteps of his brothers, Hall of Fame jockey Earlie, and William “Jinks” Fires who is a trainer. In 1977 while excising a horse at River Downs during morning training, the horse he was riding broke down and rolled over him. He sustained injuries that left him paralyzed from the waist down. Racing is in his blood, “That’s the way it is with anybody that’s riding, it’s in your blood and you care for it,” Fires said. “Growing up that’s all I ever wanted to be is a jockey.” He attends as many PDJF events as he can to help raise awareness and funds for the organization.   Tad Leggett rode for 24 years starting in Broken Bow, Nebraska where he rode his first winner. In 2015 he was inducted into the Canterbury Park Hall of Fame where he was leading Quarter Horse jockey each season from 2003 to 2006. His career ended in 2010 at Fair Meadows in Oklahoma when a two-year-old he was riding collapsed beneath him after the wire crushing his vertebrae in his neck leaving him a quadriplegic and facing a long road to recovery. Leggett continues to work hard in physical therapy and can now walk a short distance with the assistance of a walker. “Sometimes I slow down and I’ve...

Read More

Animal Element

Animal Element

@JockeyTalk

Half A Chance

Half A Chance

Ride to Win: An Inside Look at the Jockey’s Craft

Ride to Win: An Inside Look at the Jockey’s Craft

Horse Races NOW

Horse Races NOW
%d bloggers like this: