Apprentice Jockey Eclipse Voting Reopened

Voters will have chance to select any eligible apprentice, not just three finalists.

Because some of the data presented to voters in the apprentice jockey competition for an Eclipse Award included wins and earnings for one rider after he had lost his apprenticeship, voting in that category will be re-conducted.

Announcement of the error and re-vote was made Jan. 7 by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Daily Racing Form, and the National Turf Writers And Broadcasters.

On Jan. 5 it was announced that the three finalists for the apprentice jockey Eclipse Award were Ryan Curatolo, Kyle Frey, and Rosario Montanez. However, it was subsequently determined that statistics provided to voters did not accurately reflect when one of the finalists, Montanez, lost his apprentice allowance during 2011.

As a result, his statistics, as presented in the voting guide and online, included wins and earnings accomplished after he became a journeyman rider, according to a release from the NTRA.

A re-vote in the apprentice jockey category will take place early next week in advance of the Jan. 16 Eclipse Awards dinner in Beverly Hills, Calif. Voters will be able to select any eligible apprentice rider, including ones not among the originally announced group of finalists.

“This is an extremely unfortunate situation, but given the circumstances, the three voting organizations feel the only fair thing to do is to conduct a second vote,” said Keith Chamblin, senior vice president of the NTRA and a member of the Eclipse Award Steering Committee. “The three organizations agree that to have any Eclipse Award votes cast based on inaccurate or misleading data is simply not acceptable.

"Rosario Montanez had nothing to do with this mistake. He had an exceptional year."

The Eclipse Awards are bestowed upon horses and individuals whose outstanding achievements in North America have earned them the title of champion in their respective categories.