Embattled jockey Patrick Valenzuela received his California riding license and is expected to be back in the saddle for the first time since last July on Jan. 15. Valenzuela, 42, received a conditional license (Jan. 13-Dec. 31) after he and his attorney, Neil Papiano, met Jan. 12 with Santa Anita Park stewards.
The Barretts mixed sale held Oct. 25-26 at the Hinds Pavilion at Fairplex Park in Pomona, Calif., showed sharp declines over the same sale a year ago despite the dispersal of seven horses of racing age from the partnership of Noctis Stable, Neil Papiano and Steve Taub. Only one horse, stakes-winner Cheiron, sold for more than $100,000 when the hammer fell at $165,000 for the 3-year-old.
Jockey Victor Espinoza completed a sweep of the President's Day stakes doubleheader at Santa Anita when he guided Puerto Banus through heavy traffic in the stretch for a neck victory in the grade II, $200,000 San Luis Obispo Handicap. Less than one length separated the top five finishers in the turf marathon.
A majority of the horses for the four Hong Kong International Races stretched their legs over the dirt track at Sha Tin Racecourse Wednesday morning. The Hong Kong International Races take place Sunday afternoon.
The general manager of the ambulance company threatened with a lawsuit by an attorney for jockey Laffit Pincay Jr. says the Hall of Fame rider declined assistance following the accident at Santa Anita that ended his career.
Attorney Neil Papiano said he is convinced the positive drug test attributed to disqualified Hawthorne Derby (gr. IIT) winner Flying Dash was a case of mistaken identity.
On Monday, Nov. 19, a federal judge in Los Angeles dismissed the California Horse Racing Board's case against trainer Bob Baffert over a morphine positive found in a post-race urine sample of a Baffert-trained horse last year.
Bob Baffert's attorney said Wednesday he will go to Los Angeles Superior Court either Friday or Monday seeking a stay of the 60-day suspension handed down to the trainer by the California Horse Racing Board.
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