(Edited news release)
Tampa Bay Downs concluded its 83rd live race meeting May 3 by handing out honors to the leading trainer, jockey, owner, and apprentice jockey.
The title of leading trainer went to conditioner Jamie Ness for the third year in a row. Ness saddled 62 winners from 223 starters this year with purse earnings approaching $650,000.
Daniel Centeno, who has also captured the jockey title for three years in a row, was named as top rider for the current season. Centeno had 138 victories this year, just short of his record 144 wins during the 2007-2008 meet, and had nearly $2 million in purses. Centeno will take his tack to Monmouth Park over the summer, and plans to return to ride at Tampa when racing resumes again in December.
Richard Averill was the leading owner with a record 24 wins from 64 starts and more than $250,000 in earnings. Averill, who was the leading owner here in the 2005-2006 season, campaigned R Vicarious Girl, who captured four wins in five starts in the Tampa meet.
Mike Straight was the meet’s leading apprentice jockey with 16 wins. He will move his tack to Arlington Park.
One new track record was posted at Tampa Bay Downs this season when Brooks Star covered 6 ½ furlongs on the main track in 1:16.09 on April 4.