Two graded stakes wins at two tracks and a four-win day at Woodbine led Luis Contreras to be named the Jockey of the Week for July 17 – July 23, 2017. The award is voted on by a panel of experts for riding accomplishments by members of the Jockeys’ Guild, the organization which represents more than 950 riders in North America. Jockey of the Week is sponsored by Animal Element’s Foundation Detox and Product X Performance Enhancer.
Luis Contreras started the Saratoga meet in style on Friday, winning the $150,000 Schuylerville Stakes (G3) aboard Dream It Is. Contreras and Dream It Is ($11.00) opened up to take a commanding nine-length lead in the stretch for trainer Barbara Minshall and owner Hoolie Racing Stable.
Contreras was one of only four jockeys to win two stakes last week, one of two jockeys to win two graded stakes, and the only jockey to win two stakes at two different tracks. Following his Friday appearance at Saratoga, Contreras returned to his home track, Woodbine, on Saturday for the Ontario Matron Stakes.
He started the Saturday card at Woodbine with seven mounts and had won two races before he started in the feature race of the day, the $125,000 Ontario Matron Stakes (G3). Contreras and Ami’s Mesa ($9.80) rated comfortably before making a move in the stretch to win by a length for trainer Jose Carroll and owner Ivan Dalos.
Contreras returned to win the following race, marking a four-win day and moving to second place in the current meet standings at Woodbine. With his seven wins last week, Contreras maintained a win rate of 39% and was in the money on 44% of his 18 starts.
Last week, Contreras was fourth among all North American jockeys by total and stakes earnings, adding $316,189 to his career total. He has earned $74 million in just over 10,000 career starts, including 1,744 victories to date.
The two-time winner of the Sovereign Award for Outstanding Jockey in 2011 and 2012, Contreras has earned $5.15 million in his 536 starts of 2017 and currently is ranked 14th by annual earnings among all North American jockeys. The winner of this year’s Queen’s Plate, he will also seek his second straight Prince of Wales victory this week at Fort Erie.
JockeyTalk360.com spotlights the riders across North America and around the world who may be the bravest, toughest and most accomplished of all athletes. The Jockeys’ Guild Jockey of the Week is selected by a vote of representatives of America’s Best Racing, The Daily Racing Form, Equibase, Horse Racing Nation, The Jockeys’ Guild, The Paulick Report, The Thoroughbred Daily News, National Thoroughbred Racing Association, National Turf Writers and Broadcasters, Thoroughbred Racing Associations, and Turf Publicists of America.