John Velazquez

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Manley Accepts Offer to Lead Jockeys' Guild

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The Jockeys' Guild board met in a conference call with California sports agent Dwight Manley on Friday evening to accept his employment agreement to take over the top management post of the riders' organization.

Cotton Blossom Gets Pletcher Started at Spa

Things haven't changed much at Saratoga Race Course, where the 138th season opened Wednesday. Trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey John Velazquez were back in the winner's circle after Cotton Blossom won the $111,300 Schuylerville (gr. III) for 2-year-old fillies before a crowd of 27,346.

Cotton Blossom Gets Pletcher Started at Spa

Things haven't changed much at Saratoga Race Course, where the 138th season opened Wednesday. Trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey John Velazquez were back in the winner's circle after Cotton Blossom won the $111,300 Schuylerville (gr. III) for 2-year-old fillies before a crowd of 27,346.

Sanford Test for Scat Daddy

After being a Thoroughbred trainer for 10 years, Todd Pletcher should be used to the racing spotlight. This is especially true at Saratoga Race Course, where he has been the leading trainer for the past four years and also holds the single-season win record.

Adieu Returns to Form in Delaware Oaks

Adieu returned to the winner's circle for the first time since last fall's Frizette (gr. I) when she collared Amandatude inside the sixteenth pole and cruised to victory in the $500,000 Delaware Oaks (gr. II) for 3-year-old fillies at Delaware Park.

Velazquez Discusses National Manager Hire, Guild's Relationship With Horsemen

Jockeys' Guild chairman John Velazquez and other board members from the organization met Monday to discuss the June 26 selection of California sports agent Dwight Manley as the Guild's national manager. Velazquez, speaking about Guild issues for the first time since mid-June, said Tuesday the organization's main objective remains to work with horsemen in a positive manner.

Rev. Jackson: Jockeys Entitled to Revenue Share

Jockeys must "leverage their share of power" in the horse racing industry and have the right to bargain collectively, the Rev. Jesse Jackson said June 26 as Jockeys' Guild leadership moved toward a decision on the individual or company that will serve as its national manager.

Belmont Stakes Notes: Velazquez Ready to Go

After missing his mount aboard Bluegrass Cat in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) with a broken shoulder blade, John Velazquez is looking forward to riding the colt in the $1 million Belmont Stakes (gr. I) Saturday.

Velazquez 'Blessed' to be Back in the Saddle

Jockey John Velazquez said he feels blessed to be back in the saddle so soon after suffering serious injuries during a race at Keeneland in April. He also is looking forward forward to piloting Bluegrass Cat, who was made the 3-1 morning-line favorite, in Saturday's Belmont Stakes (gr. I).

Take-Charge Jockeys Land Guild Senate Seats

Many of the jockeys who were instrumental in overthrowing the controversial management team at the Jockeys' Guild last fall and moving the organization in a new direction were re-elected to the organization's senate after the ballots were counted June 5.

Velazquez Returns a Winner at Belmont Park

Jockey John Velazquez returned a winner in his first start since being sidelined in an April 20 racing accident at Keeneland when he piloted Mr Sam I Am to a 2 3/4-length win for trainer Todd Pletcher in Belmont Park's fourth race on Friday.

In Last-Minute Change, Velazquez to Make Comeback at Belmont Park

Jockey John Velazquez, originally planning a return to racing aboard the Todd Pletcher-trained Scat Daddy at Monmouth Park in New Jersey, will make his comeback Friday at Belmont Park instead. According to Velazquez's agent, Angel Cordero, the jockey's original mount scratched at Monmouth and will run Saturday at Belmont.

Bluegrass Cat Breezes for Belmont Stakes

Bluegrass Cat, the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) runner up to Barbaro, breezed five furlongs over Belmont's main track Sunday morning in 1:00.30.

Velazquez Hopes to be Riding Before Belmont

Jockey John Velazquez, sidelined with a fractured right shoulder blade and cracked ribs after a Keeneland racing accident on April 20, said he may return to racing before the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) on June 10.

Jockeys' Fund Unites Industry, But IHA Plan a Question

The launch of the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund is a clear sign the relationship between jockeys and other industry groups is improving, but they remain at odds over a proposal by some members of Congress to amend the Interstate Horseracing Act to provide insurance for jockeys and others who make their living at the racetrack.

Louisiana Jockey Bill Advances to Senate Floor

An undisclosed agreement between Louisiana racetracks and the Jockeys' Guild caused the latter organization to take a neutral stand on a bill in the Louisiana Senate limiting the ability of riders to raise frivolous lawsuits.

Jockeys in Favor of Amending 'Horseracing Act'

Eclipse Award-winning jockey John Velazquez said he would be in favor of an amendment to the Interstate Horseracing Act of 1978 that would provide workers' compensation insurance for jockeys, exercise riders, trainers, and backstretch workers.

Velazquez to Miss Derby with Shoulder, Chest Injuries

Jockey John Velazquez, injured when his mount broke down at Keeneland April 20, will miss the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) due to a fractured right shoulder blade and other injuries, according to Tristan Barry, an assistant to trainer Todd Pletcher.

Velazquez Injured After Colt Wins Forerunner

Two-time Eclipse Award-winning jockey John Velazquez remained hospitalized Thursday evening following a nasty spill in Keeneland's feature race, the Forerunner Stakes. The incident occurred when Velazquez's mount, Up an Octave (Brahms), broke down and fell less than a sixteenth of a mile after winning the $110,600 turf event for 3-year-olds.

Kentucky Derby Trail: Five Weeks or Bust

Fresh is best. Those are the words Barbaro's trainer Michael Matz is living by. Whether he's right or wrong, you have to admire him for going against history and public opinion and sticking to his guns, much like another former equestrian rider, Tim Ritchey, did last with his unorthodox training of Afleet Alex.

Bushfire Too Hot to Handle in Florida Oaks

Bushfire, under John Velazquez, shook off a last-place trip in the Davona Dale stakes (gr. II) at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 4 and scored a three-quarter length victory in the $200,000 Florida Oaks for 3-year-old fillies on Saturday.

Saint Liam, Bob Lewis Win NY Turf Writer Awards

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Saint Liam, who clinched his Horse of the Year campaign with a solid victory in the Breeders' Cup Classic - Powered by Dodge (gr. I) at Belmont Park, led the list of 2005 award winners announced March 15 by the New York Turf Writers' Association.

English Channel Rolls On in Canadian Turf

James Scatourchio's 4-year-old English Channel, making his first start since finishing fifth in the John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT), drove to a three-quarters of a length victory in the $100,000 Canadian Turf Handicap Saturday at Gulfsteam Park.

Velazquez to Stick With Bluegrass Cat

After agonizing for days whether to ride Bluegrass Cat in the March 18 Tampa Bay Derby (gr. III) or Keyed Entry in the Gotham Stakes (gr. III) the same day, John Velazquez and agent Angel Cordero decided to stick to their commitment and ride WinStar Farm's Bluegrass Cat.

Bandini to Return Wednesday at Gulfstream

Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith's 4-year-old Bandini was nominated to Saturday's $200,000 Richter Scale Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. II), but trainer Todd Pletcher will let the talented colt get his season started in a one-mile allowance/optional feature Wednesday at Gulfstream Park instead.

After Delay, Wait a While Puts Rivals Away

Arindel Farm's Wait a While, running for the Eclipse Award-winning duo of trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey John Velazquez, demolished her six rivals in Saturday's $150,000 Davona Dale Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-old fillies at sloppy Gulfstream Park.

Bluegrass Cat Repels 'Bull, Wins Remsen

WinStar Farm's homebred Bluegrass Cat, the 3-5 favorite, withstood a serious threat from Flashy Bull in the deep stretch and drew away from the stubborn challenger to win the 92nd running of the $200,000 Remsen (gr. II) for 2-year-olds at Aqueduct Saturday.

Pletcher Strikes Again With Magna Graduate

On a day that Todd Pletcher set the North American earnings record for trainers, an ultra-game Magna Graduate proved to be his cherry on top, winning the $573,500 Clark Handicap (gr. II) at chilly Churchill Downs Friday by a head over Suave.

Velazquez Sets Jockey Season Earnings Mark

Jockey John Velazquez attained the highest mark in yearly purses ever won by a North American-based jockey with his third-place finish aboard India in the $105,200 Valley Stream Stakes Sunday at Aqueduct. Through Nov. 20, last year's Eclipse Award-winning jockey has $23,355,830 in purse earnings.

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