Toledo dreaming big after second Maryland riding title

By Jim Dunleavy/DRF on 01/05/2018 1:59 PM

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Fall brings out the best in Jevian Toledo.

For the third consecutive year, Toledo topped the rider standings at the Laurel Park fall meet, which began just after Labor Day and continued through the end of the year. His 61 wins helped secure his second overall Maryland riding title.

Toledo rode 144 winners at the three 2017 Laurel meets and the 12-day Pimlico stand. Toledo, 23, also was the winningest rider in Maryland in 2015. Trevor McCarthy won the year-end titles in 2014 and 2016.

“I have had a lot of support from the trainers and owners,” Toledo said. “I’ve got to thank everybody for my success – all the trainers who have helped me, my agent, and all the people who take care of the horses: the grooms and the hotwalkers.

“I hope the opportunities keep coming and that I have even better chances in 2018, that I can keep improving my career.”

Toledo, who has 776 career wins, began riding in the U.S. in May 2013 after winning 32 races in his native Puerto Rico. Originally overshadowed by the more experienced McCarthy and Victor Carrasco, he has long since become their equal.

McCarthy and Carrasco both were badly injured in spills this year, making Toledo’s job a little easier. McCarthy, who dislocated a shoulder in May at Monmouth Park, is just now beginning his comeback at Aqueduct. Carrasco broke his leg in September during a race at Delaware Park and remains sidelined.

“When Victor and Trevor are riding it is really tough,” Toledo said. “But there are a lot of good riders I compete against here. It’s hard because everyone has their own business and a lot of riders come here from out of town, from Philly, from Penn National, from Charles Town.”

Toledo, who is represented by agent Marty Leonard, won two stakes at the fall meet aboard Whirlin Curlin for trainer Gary Capuano. The biggest moment of his career was when he rode Awesome Speed in the 2016 Preakness for Alan Goldberg, finishing ninth. His richest career win came aboard Miss Behaviour in the Grade 3, $500,000 Charles Town Oaks in 2014 for Phil Schoenthal.

“It would be wonderful to find a horse that can take me to the bigger 3-year-old races or the Breeders’ Cup,” Toledo said. “That is my goal.”

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