Ex-Jockey Boulanger Gets First Training Win

He saddles Tinkerbuck to win the first race at Calder Race Course Sept. 13.

(from Calder Race Course report)

Former jockey Gary Boulanger saddled his first winner as a trainer when the 6-year-old mare Tinkerbuck won the first race at Calder Race Course Sept. 13.

Tinkerbuck, who won the $5,000 claiming race by two lengths with Luis Saez aboard, was the first horse Boulanger started when he embarked on his training career April 26.

Boulanger, 41, was the leading rider of the 1994 and 1995 Calder Meet and the 1994-95 Tropical Meet. He was seriously injured in a 2005 spill at Gulfstream Park. He suffered a ruptured spleen, broken ribs, and a detached tendon in his left elbow from the spill. A blood clot was also removed from his brain and part of his skull had to be removed to prevent cranial pressure. He was lucky to be alive, but his riding career was over.

Boulanger needed a long time to recover, but as of last year was teaching riding lessons and working with young students on a farm in Davie, Fla.  He was involved in a farm accident last fall from which he suffered additional injuries. He had taken out his trainer’s license in 2007, but the farm accident, in which he suffered a broken tibia and fibia, as well as a dislocated left ankle, set him back from becoming a trainer full time.

Boulanger is ninth on the all-time leading jockeys list for at Calder  with 723 winners; he is eighth on the Tropical Meet list with 348 winners.