John Velazquez

John Velazquez

John Duca/Tom Cooley Photography

Velazquez Plans Derby Week Return

The jockey hopes to start riding May 1, in time to make the Kentucky Derby.

Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez hopes to resume riding May 1, just three days before the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), according to a Jockeys' Guild release.
The regular rider of both Besilu Stables Florida Derby (gr. I) winner Orb  and Wood Memorial (gr. I) winner Verrazano , Velazquez was sidelined when he injured his first rib on his right side and chipped the radius bone on his right wrist during a spill at Aqueduct Racetrack in the seventh race April 7.
The Jockeys' Guild chairman was released from North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, N.Y., the evening of April 7. The following day he saw his personal doctor, Dr. Stephen O'Brien. He told him that the injuries will heal on their own and Velazquez can resume riding in three weeks, according to the release. 
"Velazquez and his wife, Leona, would like to give thanks to everybody who sent well wishes since the time of his injuries," said the release. "The calls, texts, and all of the thoughts and prayers were greatly appreciated."
"We just wanted to thank everyone for the messages," Velazquez said. "I'm doing real well."

In other news April 10, jockey Joel Rosario was named to ride Orb in the Kentucky Derby.