Rosario leaves freezing New York for Hot Springs

Joel Rosario holds up the Concert Tour saddle pad after their victory in the 61st G2 Rebel in Oaklawn. (Coady Photography)

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – The favorite to clinch an Eclipse award as the nation’s Outstanding Jockey in 2021 will begin his push in 2022 at Oaklawn.

Joel Rosario is named to seven horses on Friday, which will mark his first day as a Hot Springs regular and his first move since suffering a hairline fracture in a rib when he was unhooked shortly after the end of a race on December 2 at Aqueduct.

Rosario ($ 32,944,478) was aiming for a single-season North American record for pre-injury stock market gains. Now in good health, Rosario’s return to the saddle will fall on his 37e birthday.

“He takes care of himself like no one else, probably you’ve never met him,” Rosario’s agent Ron Anderson said on Saturday afternoon. “He’s exceptionally fit… his friend is a nutritionist. She taught her how to take care of her weight, what to eat, what not to eat. He is ready to go at any time. It will be six weeks since he fell and had a broken hair. It’s time to start over.

The seven horses named Friday by Rosario are for Hall of Fame and Oaklawn Eternal Training Champion Steve Asmussen. Rosario and Asmussen teamed up to win the $ 2million Compound Breeders’ Cup (G1) on November 5 at Del Mar with Echo Zulu undefeated. Rosario won the $ 6million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) the next day aboard Knicks Go for coach Brad Cox.

Knicks Go with Rosario win $ 6 million Breeder’s Cup Classic. (Eric Kalet)

Cox (12 wins) and Asmussen (11) entered the Oaklawn Coaching Rankings 2021-2022 on Sunday. Coupled with the structure of the Oaklawn Stock Exchange, the highest in the country this winter, Anderson said Oaklawn is a perfect fit for Rosario, which has been hugely successful in Hot Springs, especially in 2020. Rosario has wintered the last year in Santa Anita, but Anderson has Hall of Famous John Velazquez was there in 2022. Velazquez’s main client is Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert.

“We have success for two guys who are 1-2 and 2-1 there,” said Anderson, referring to Oaklawn. “Winter in California isn’t quite the same as it used to be. I’m just looking for a change. So for Brad, we won; Steve, we won for. We won a Breeders’ Cup for both. It’s three days a week and the handbags are fantastic. It’s a good place to go for a change. I also have Johnny, and Johnny is in California, at Bob’s request. Sometimes it’s just the flow of how things feel. Johnny has won the last two Kentucky Derbys for Bob. Bob would like him to come there. Joel won the Breeders’ Cups for Brad and Steve. They’re kind of the linchpins of Oaklawn. The purses are big. Joël doesn’t care there. He likes that.”

Rosario rode six days in the final weeks of the Oaklawn reunion in 2020 and won 15 races, including the 150,000 Oaklawn Mile Stakes aboard Tom’s State for Coach Al Stall, $ 100,000 Rainbow Stakes aboard Man in the Can for Coach Ron Moquett of Hot Springs, $ 165,000 Arkansas Breeders’ Championship Stakes aboard Man in the Can and the $ 500,000 Arkansas Derby (G1) Second Division at Nadal’s board for Baffert.

Rosario piloted Concert Tour until victory in the G2 Rebel. (Coady Photography)

Coupled with a brace in March, including the million dollar Rebel Stakes (G2) aboard Nadal, Rosario finished with a spectacular 17-10-7 record on just 45 mounts and raised $ 2,030,576 in scholarship gains. Rosario placed second for stakes wins in the competition (five), fourth for stock market wins and 11e in wins – just short of making it into the top 10 – with a mind-boggling 38% success rate. Rosario added three more stakes wins at the Oaklawn reunion in 2021, including the $ 1 million Rebel (G2) for Baffert aboard Concert Tour.

Anderson said Rosario was booked to participate in the $ 150,000 stakes concert tour in the fifth season for older horses on Jan. 15 at Oaklawn, a 1-mile run would mark the colt’s first start for Cox. Rosario and Cox are set to team up again on January 29 at Gulfstream Park when Knicks Go make their final career debut in the $ 3M Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1).

“World class runner,” Cox said on Saturday afternoon. “I mean, it’s no secret about it. He is a very good all-rounder and very happy to be there during the competition. I can’t wait for him to team up with the Knicks Go in the Pegasus again and get out of there.

Anderson said Rosario is expected to ride regularly at Oaklawn until at least early April. Rosario has 28 career wins at Oaklawn, including 12 bets, with his mounts bringing in $ 4,979,104. In addition to Nadal, Rosario won the $ 200,000 Azeri Stakes (G2) and $ 600,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (G1) in 2014 aboard Close Hatches for Hall of Fame coach Bill Mott. Close Hatches won an Eclipse Award as the Country Champion in Older Women that year.

A native of the Dominican Republic, Rosario rode his first winner in the United States in 2006. He has more than 3,000 career victories, including 15 in Breeders’ Cup races and three in Triple Crown events, and his mounts have won over $ 250 million. . Rosario won the 2013 $ 10 million Dubai World Cup (G1) in the United Arab Emirates aboard Animal Kingdom.

In addition to stock market wins, Rosario led the country in both stakes wins (69) and ranked stakes wins (49) in 2021, according to Equibase, the race’s official data collection organization. Rosario is looking for its first Eclipse award.

“Look, like I tell people, he’s a world class runner,” Anderson said. “He could go anywhere in the world and be competitive. Luckily, we get in there and ride for Steve right away. Got calls with Brad, got calls with (Ron) Moquett and other people. We will come back to that here.

Finish lines

Lindsay schultz, a former assistant under the Hall of Fame coach Shug McGaughey, recorded his first career victory in training in Saturday’s second race with Capture the glory ($ 36.80). It was the 10 of Schultze early career, according to Equibase, the official race data collection organization.Francisco Arrieta rode the winner for Schultz’s main customer, Ten Strike Racing (Marshall gram and native of Arkansas Clay sanders). … Eight-time Oaklawn Riding Champion Ricardo Santana Jr. achieved a double on Saturday, winning the fourth race aboard the favorite Saffa’s day ($ 5.60) for Hall of Fame Coach Steve asmussen and the eighth race, the $ 150,000 Pippin Stakes for older fillies and mares, aboard the favorites Coach ($ 5.20) for the coach Brad cox. … Millionaire winner of multiple ranked issues CZ rocket is set to debut in 2022 in Friday’s eighth race, an allowance sprint for older horses. … Post positions are to be drawn on Monday for the fifth season of $ 150,000 for older horses at 1 mile on January 15th.

Oaklawn Barn Notes by Robert Yates


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