Jockeys to Battle at Big M in 'Katrina Invitational'

Jockeys to Battle at Big M in 'Katrina Invitational'
Photo: Associated Press
Gary Stevens, among the jockeys to participate in the Katrina Invitational Jockey Challenge.
Edited press release

Ten jockeys will square off at Meadowlands the evening of Nov. 10 in the Katrina Invitational Jockey Challenge, a fundraiser for Louisiana horsemen impacted by Hurricane Katrina.

A team of New Jersey- and New York-based jockeys will face riders from Louisiana in four races--the third, fourth, sixth, and seventh--on a program that begins at 7:30 p.m. EST.

Donations will go to Louisiana horsemen through the Race Track Chaplaincy of America. Meadowlands, operated by the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, will contribute $10,000 toward the fundraising effort.

Patrons who contribute to the fund will be able to get autorgraphs from the jockeys from 7-11 that evening.

The competing jockeys will donate riding fees. Those who have agreed to participate so far include Joe Bravo, Kent Desormeaux, Stewart Elliott, Aaron Gryder, Mark Guidry, Craig Perret, Mike Smith, and Gary Stevens.

Desormeaux, Guidry, and Perret are Louisiana natives. Retired Hall of Famer Eddie Delahoussaye, also from Louisiana, will serve as captain of the Louisiana team.

"The winners in this competition will be the horsemen who have had their homes, farms, and livelihoods washed away by Hurricane Katrina," Dennis Dowd, senior vice president of racing for the NJSEA, said in a release. "We hope the riders, trainers, and horse owners, as well as the public, will be generous in their donations.

"With the funds raised by this event, hopefully we can help the Louisiana horsemen and kick start the rebirth of the racing industry in Louisiana."

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