A week after he scored an impressive seven wins in one day at Gulfstream, Luis Saez returned as the leading rider by number of wins and earnings to be named Jockeys’ Guild Jockey of the Week for January 29 – February 4, 2018. 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.
Saez led all North American jockeys by earnings and by total number of wins for the week, with nine wins in 41 starts. He was also the second leading rider by stakes earnings, with $202,540 earned in four stakes starts last week.
His four stakes starts were all on Saturday at Gulfstream, starting with a win in the $200,000 Swale Stakes (G3). Saez guided Strike Power ($3.60) to an early lead, then never looked back, winning by nearly three lengths as the post-time favorite. Saez also finished second in the Holy Bull (G2) with Free Drop Billy and finished fourth and fifth in the Forward Gal Stakes (G3) and the Dania Beach Stakes (G3), respectively.
As the leading rider by total earnings, Saez earned $386,100 last week. He is currently the third leading rider among all North American jockeys by earnings for 2018, with $2,683,389 earned this year. His career earnings to date exceed $81 million.
With his nine wins, Saez maintained a 22% win rate for the week. He also picked up five second-place finishes and nine third-place finishes, finishing in the money on nearly 56% of his mounts. He is 47 for 212 this year and has won 1,840 of his career 10,768 starts.
Saez is the leading rider at the current Gulfstream meet with 81 wins, 30 more than second-place rider Tyler Gaffalione. Saez ended last year’s Gulfstream winter meet as the leading rider and was the second leading rider behind Javier Castellano the year prior.
Last week, panelists were nearly split between Florent Geroux and Luis Saez for Jockey of the Week honors. Though Geroux carried a narrow majority, voters expressed support for Saez’ impressive accomplishments: he led all North American riders by number of wins, with 15, and he notched seven of those wins in a single card at Gulfstream Park. Only Jerry Bailey and Tyler Gaffalione have won as many races in one day at the Hallandale Beach oval.
In addition, Saez was named Jockey of the Week in December following a six-win day, also at Gulfstream Park.
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 TVG, 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.