Espinoza Gets Mount on A P Valentine
Jockey Victor Espinoza has picked up the mount on A P Valentine in Saturday's Preakness Stakes.
Trainer Nick Zito announced this afternoon that Victor Espinoza, who was replaced on Congaree by Jerry Bailey, has been named to ride A P Valentine in this Saturday's Preakness Stakes.

"Coolmore is fine with the decision," Zito said. "I've tried to call the coach (co-owner Rick Pitino), but he's been busy, so I guess the assistant coach will have to take over. But I'm sure Rick won't have a problem with it.

"Victor is a good fit for this horse. He's a great young rider for the future and we want to hitch our wagon to him. He's going to be a star. I love this kid and I watched his ride on Spain in the Breeders' Cup Distaff and was very impressed with him. What I liked most is the fact that he wants to ride the horse one hundred percent and took off nine mounts Saturday to ride him."

Ironically, in 1996, Zito named Pat Day to ride Louis Quatorze in the Preakness after Day had been replaced in the Preakness by Jerry Bailey, after also finishing third in the Kentucky Derby. Louis Quatorze went on to win the Preakness, setting a track record.

"He's hungry," Zito said. "We wanted the best possible scenario and we got it."

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