Valenzuela Returns from Flu to Pass Krone

Jockey Patrick Valenzuela passed the injured Julie Krone to take over the jockey lead Wednesday at Hollywood Park.

Valenzuela, seeking the first sweep in 20 years of the five major meets on the Southern California circuit, returned Wednesday after missing five days because of the flu.

Valenzuela, who has a history of drug problems, was tested by the California Horse Racing Board before his return. He passed a urinalysis Wednesday morning in the CHRB office at Hollywood Park under the supervision of investigator Jim Hamilton. He also brought a note from his doctor verifying bronchial problems last week and used an inhaler to combat the illness.

Valenzuela, Gary Stevens and Alex Solis rode two winners each on the eight-race card. Valenzuela has 24 wins to 23 for Krone, who will miss the remainder of the Hollywood Park autumn meet with injuries sustained in a spill Friday. The meeting ends Sunday.