Jockey Edgar Prado has parted ways with longtime agent Bob Frieze and will be represented at Gulfstream Park in South Florida by New Jersey agent James Riccio Jr., Prado said late Nov. 20.
Prado, 42, declined to comment on the situation other than to confirm he would be represented by Riccio, who recently held Channing Hill’s book for the 2009 meet at Monmouth Park.
“We talked and here we are today,” said Riccio, 31. “I’m excited to go forward and ecstatic to represent a Hall of Fame rider and a class act.”
Riccio, a resident of New Jersey, began his career as an agent for jockey Nick Santagata and also represented Julien Pimentel and C.C. Lopez. He said he planned to make multiple trips to Florida in December to begin setting up Prado’s business for the Gulfstream meet, which opens Jan. 3.
Prado, among the perennial leaders on the New York circuit, had an uncharacteristically slow meeting at Belmont Park this fall. From Sept. 11 to Oct. 25, he rode just 13 winners from 144 starters to rank ninth in the standings. In comparison, Eibar Coa, who ranked 10th in the standings, rode 12 winners from just 55 starters.
Among Prado’s scores, however, were the 2009 editions of the Jamaica Handicap (gr. I) with Take the Points, the Champagne Stakes (gr. I) with Homeboykris, and the Futurity Stakes (gr. II) with D’Funnybone.
Frieze had repped Prado since he moved to New York in 1999 after then-agent Steve Rushing elected to stay in Maryland. Prior to holding Prado’s book, the veteran agent represented the now-retired Jerry Bailey for 15 years.