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|Arlington Park Barn Notes (6/7/08)
Contact: Graham Ross
In today's notes:
Retired Hall of Fame jockey Pat Day, second behind fellow Hall of Famer Earlie Fires among Arlington’s all-time leading riders, will be the featured guest speaker at the Race Track Chaplaincy of America’s White Horse Festival Sunday evening at Arlington Park.
Free food, music, games and raffle prizes are among the attractions of the Festival restricted to backstretch workers and Arlington personnel, but volunteers from the public are invited to help assist in the festivities which begin behind the stable kitchen shortly after the last race of the day.
For more information, contact Arlington Park Chaplain Ernesto Reyes at (773) 610-4334.
Day rode 1,330 of his 8,803 career victories at Arlington, including the 1994 Arlington Million astride Paradise Creek. The native of Brush, Colorado, is also the all-time leading rider at Keeneland and Churchill Downs, where he won the 1992 Kentucky Derby aboard Lil E. Tee. Day also had five wins in the Preakness, three in the Belmont Stakes, and was the nation’s Eclipse Award-winning jockey in 1984, 1986, 1987 and 1991.
Since his retirement on Aug. 4, 2005, Day has served as the official spokesman for the Race Track Chaplaincy of America.
“At this juncture, I’m not being called to leave the industry, I’m merely giving up my tack,” Day said when announcing his retirement. “I’m no longer participating as a jockey, but I will still be involved in the racing industry that’s been so good to me.”
Earlier in the afternoon, Pepsi Family Day, presented by the Daily Herald, will also be held at Arlington Park, with areas of the Park Area set aside for children to draw chalk creations.
Also, Junior Jockey Club members will get to meet members of Arlington Park’s jockey colony between 1 and 2 pm and get to take pictures of their favorite riders. The jockeys will be available to answer questions and sign autographs during that time. The first 300 JJC members will receive real jockey goggles.
Veteran Illinois trainer Moises Yanez vaulted from a tie for 10th into a tie for third in the latest Arlington Park jockey standings by saddling a training triple Friday.
The 57-year-old native of Chihuahua, Mexico, took down winning honors in the opener with Charles Sigrist and Del Sol Farm’s Sig and Zag, came back to the winner’s circle in the third with Sigrist’s Rojo Sol, and book-ended the program when he saddled Arturo Lomeli and Rosendo Zepeda’s Bachicho in the finale.
Both halves of owner Sigrist’s winning pair were ridden by Arlington newcomer Junior Alvarado, and that duo missed a third winner in the fourth race with Passionate Kip, who finished fifth.
“I’ve been racing here since 1979 and I’ve had several two-win days, but I’ve never had three winners in the same afternoon,” said Sigrist, a Chicago native. “My first winner at Arlington came with a horse named Barb’s Summer and Juvenal Diaz rode him.”
Also scoring a riding double Friday was jockey Eddie Razo, who won Friday’s sixth with Dunn, Moss and Stockseth’s Wild Adventure for trainer Don Von Hemel and the seventh with Circle C Group Stables’ Green Door, who was saddled by Rebecca Maker.
Jockey Rene Douglas, trainer Greg Geier and owner James Montesano were all honored Friday as jockey, trainer and owner of the month respectively for May at Arlington Park.
Douglas, Arlington’s defending champion from last season and the only jockey to have won four straight riding titles at the local oval, rode 34 winners from 108 mounts during May.
“I’m very happy. Thank God we’re off to such a good start,” said Douglas after being recognized. “I’d like to thank my agent (Dennis Cooper). It’s a team effort and we’re a good team. Now we have to keep it going.”
Geier saddled two stakes winners in May to earn the month’s conditioning honors.
“It’s was a very good month for me,” said Geier. “Now we have to try and keep the horses running as well as they have been. This is great. I’ve never been Trainer of the Month before.”
Owner Montesano’s silks visited the winner’s circle four times from seven starters, and all seven of his runners finished in the money.
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