Jockey Russel Hadley capped off a great month of riding with a signature win in the Grade 1 $1,170,000 Heritage Place Futurity at Remington Park and in doing so was named the AQHA/Jockeys’ Guild Jockey of the Month for May. The award is voted on by a panel of Quarter Horse racing experts for riding accomplishments and achievements for the previous month of racing.
The extremely likable rider won the richest race in the state, on the richest night of racing ever at Remington Park, as the 2-year-old gelding BV Midnite Express flew from the starting gate to take early control and was confidently ridden to victory by Hadley.
“I’ve been waiting for that start ever since we came to Remington with that horse,” Hadley said from the winner’s circle. “He’s something special. That’s when good horses come to the top when the money’s on the line. I knew there were some good horses that could come to run me down but about 100 yards before the wire I knew I had it.”
The selective rider usually maintains a good win percentage wherever he rides. The month of May was no different as he scored at an outstanding 35 percent with six wins from just 17 starters. His biggest win, in The Heritage Place Futurity, helped him top all riders in the month of May as well with earnings of $549,266.
The 32 year old was all smiles in the Futurity winners circle with his new daughter Brix and wife Amanda. Racing is truly a family affair as his father-in-law is the well known horseman John Buchanan. The win was even more special for Hadley as he seems to be back at full strength following a spill in the Bank of America Distance Challenge last October at Prairie Meadows.
Hadley is looking forward to future races with the immensely talented BV Midnite Express and will more than likely split his riding time between Ruidoso Downs and Retama Park in the next few months.