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Sunday, November 19, 2006

Jockeys' Guild | News & Articles

Originally posted on at: 11/15/2006 3:15:02 PM

Two-time Eclipse Award winning jockey John Velazquez, who rode his first career winner in 1990 at Hipodromo El Comandante in his native Puerto Rico, was honored as one of 12 inductees into the Salon de la Fama del Hipismo Puertorriqueño (Puerto Rico's Racing Hall of Fame) during a ceremony held at El Comandante racecourse on Sunday.

Jockeys' Guild Chairman Velazquez was one of five human honorees inducted along with jockey Alexis Feliciano, owner Luis Morales of Establo Villa Real, trainer Maximo Gomez, and sports athlete Jose "Pantalones" Santiago.

Equine inductees included Puerto Rico's 2000 champion three-year-old filly Bricola (Fappiano's Star), three-time Puerto Rican champion Gran Duque (Irish Open), Puerto Rican Triple Crown champs Estrellero (Eqtesaad) and Mediavilla R. (Sejm), and imported champions Door Prize (Eight Thirty) and D'Wildcat Speed Forest Wildcat) and sire Fappiano's Star (Fappiano). - Michael Burns
Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Eddie Castro: 1,000th Win

Originally posted on at: 11/15/2006 4:49:54 PM

Jockey Eddie Castro earned his 1,000th career win in North America on Wednesday when he guided Jermidy to a 3 3/4-length victory in the first race at Churchill Downs.

An Eclipse Award winner as outstanding apprentice jockey in 2003, Castro is riding in Kentucky full-time for the first time in his career. The 21-year-old previously captured three riding titles at Calder Race Course, where he set a North American record by earning nine wins on a single card on June 4, 2005.

"It's nice after having raced at Calder to do it here," Castro said. "I'm very happy to win my 1,000th race."

Castro rallied Miesque's Approval to victory in the $2-million NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (G1) on November 4 at Churchill. The Los Santos, Panama, native has earned ten of his wins in graded stakes, including a victory by Pampered Princess in the 2005 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes (G1) at Keeneland Race Course.

Castro ranks 16th among North American riders in mount earnings this year with $8,232,157 through Tuesday. Since 2003, his mounts have earned $25,796,963 in 5,570 starts.
Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Kyle Cox Story...

Kyle Cox is a special young man (going on 6 years old) who suffers from a chronic disorder and has already had several surgeries - including brain, lung, 2 stomach surgeries, and recently he just had titanium rods inserted into his chest wall.

Kyle is a huge fan of the jockeys at Churchill Downs and around Kentucky, but all of the jockeys are his "buddies" and "heroes." He cheers for all of them, and waits patiently to say "hi" or to get an autograph. He has things like boots, hats, goggles, silks, etc., but dreamed of becoming an "honorary jockey" or a having commendation from the Jockeys' Guild.

The day before the Breeders' Cup, Kyle's dream of becoming an "honorary jockey" became true. The jockeys from Churchill Downs and Guild Representative Jeff Johnston honored Kyle with an honorary #1 Jockeys Fan Certificate signed by John Velazquez and Edgar Prado in the Winners' Circle.

The jockeys were all amazing....everyone there came out for his ceremony, and it was very heart-warming.

Afterwards, Kyle went to the jocks room and they outfitted him with a complete set of gear - from boots to a helmet, and Randall Toups gave him a saddle. Steve, the Clerk of Scales, then told Kyle, "well, you're a jockey now - you better go weigh in."

Kyle had an amazing day; he is such a special little guy. To have such a great attitude while having to suffer physically is just amazing. He seems not to have a care, despite the surgeries. He just loves horses, racing, and especially the jocks!
Kyle Cox is the son of Amie and Troy Gilbert of Louisville, KY. Kyle has an older sister Rachel who is 11 and brother Ryan is 8. The siblings could not be at the ceremony due to obligations at school.

The Guild would like to say a special "thanks" to Paula Weglarz. This was all made possible by Paula sharing the wonderful story of Kyle Cox.

Godspeed Kyle!!!
Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Remembering Ronnie Banks

Ron Banks, one of the legendary rider at Los Alamitos, passed away on Tuesday, November 7. Banks retired from Los Alamitos with 891 Quarter Horse wins, a figure that ranks him 16th all-time here. Banks also won 39 Quarter Horse stakes races here, which is the 20th highest amount ever at Los Alamitos.

Banks rode some of the top Quarter Horses in the 1950s and '60s, including two-time Marathon Invitational winner Table Tennis, 1956 Kindergarten Futurity winner Pap and 1960 Go Man Go Handicap winner Triple Lady, 1963 Chicado V Handicap winner Straw Flight. In his career, Banks won the Vandy's Flash Handicap three times and the Kindergarten twice.

Banks, a former manager of the Jockey's Guild, is also credited as the person who discovered the famous stallion Beduino back in 1972. Beduino went on to sire Chicks Beduino, a sire of multiple champions including track record holder Corona Chick and 2002 Co-World Champion Whosleavingwho.

The Jockeys' Guild offer our heart-felt condolences to his family.


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