Former jockey and current TVG horseracing expert Corey Black has accepted the position as agent for jockey Patrick Valenzuela effective immediately. Valenzuela and his former agent, Nick Cosato, parted ways earlier this week after Valenzuela expressed concerns over Cosato also representing Corey Nakatani.
"It's a day to day thing," Black said. "I'm still going to be working for TVG in the afternoons and will be doing both jobs for at least the next little while. I'll be at the track in the mornings and for the draw and then go to work at TVG. I can watch the races on the internet and keep up with things while I'm at work and make phone calls if I need to during the commercial breaks. I spoke to my boss (at TVG) and we haven't worked out all the details, but he said he'd accommodate me, which was great."
Thirty five-year-old Black, who retired from riding in late 2000 with 1,524 victories and purses of over $54 million, has some previous experience as an agent as he represented Hall of Famer Gary Stevens and Brice Blanc for several months just over three years ago. He also galloped horses and worked on the movie "Seabiscuit" since his retirement.
"I made myself available to Patrick a few days ago," Black said. "He had spoken to (agent) Bob Meldahl, but Bob didn't want to part with Mike Smith, so he contacted me. We're still working out the details, but it's official. I'm very much looking forward to the challenge."
Valenzuela missed the first 13 days of the Santa Anita meet except for due to several previous suspensions for riding in fractions. He returned to the saddle on Jan. 10 and has won with 10 of 49 mounts through Monday's holiday program.
Overall in 2003, Valenzuela won riding titles at the Santa Anita winter/spring meet, the Hollywood Park spring/summer meet, Del Mar, Oak Tree and the Hollywood autumn meet and is the first rider since Chris McCarron in 1983 to accomplish the feat.
Valenzuela took off his mounts for Thursday's card saying he twisted his ankle. It was unclear how severe the injury was or when he'd return to the saddle.