Kent Desormeaux is one of the
hottest jockeys in horse racing. He has won the Kentucky Derby three
separate times aboard Real Quiet, Fusiachi Pegasus, and Big Brown.
He will be attempting to win the Kentucky Derby for the fourth time
this year on Hold Me Back. Experience is invaluable in a race like
the Kentucky Derby. Skill goes a long way, but nothing quite
substitutes for having been there before. Let�s take a look at some
of the jockeys who have proved they can get the job done on the
first Saturday in May.
Edgar Prado- Who can forget this hall of famers
captivating win in the 2006 Kentucky Derby aboard Barbaro? He not
only gave the horse a great ride, but helped him to romp home by 6
lengths. His mount was a man among boys that day. Prado is one of
the most gifted riders in the game and is highly sought after by
trainers. He is well known for ending Smarty Jones bid for the
Triple Crown when he won the Belmont Stakes in 2004 aboard Birdstone.
His mount for the 2009 Kentucky Derby is Dunkirk. He rode this colt
first out to a maiden breaking victory at Gulfstream Park. Dunkirk
has a hell of a chance to win this race, and you can bank on the
fact that Edgar Prado will give the closer a patient race and put
him in a position to win.
Gabriel Saez- Panama is the home of many great riders
and the young Saez is no exception. While he hasn�t been on the
scene as long as many other riders, he has already accomplished
much. In 2008 he rode Proud Spell to a powerful victory in the
Kentucky Oaks, and finished second in the Kentucky Derby on the ill
fated Eight Belles. He rides many horses for trainer Larry Jones,
and will be riding his colt in this Kentucky Derby. That colt goes
by the name of Friesan Fire, and he was the victor in the Louisiana
Derby. Saez and Jones will be out for redemption this year and you
can bet your ass they are going to give it everything they have. You
can�t go wrong with Gabriel Saez.
Stewart Elliott- Many pundits, me included, believe
this jockey should have ridden the last Triple Crown winner.
Unfortunately, it just wasn�t meant to be. Elliott won the Kentucky
Derby and Preakness Stakes aboard Smarty Jones before finishing
second in the Belmont Stakes in 2004. His win in the Kentucky Derby
was the first time a jockey had won the race on his first try in
over 25 years. Elliott isn�t the most well known guy out there, but
he has won over 4,000 races and is more than capable of winning with
the right horse underneath him. That horse will be Kentucky Cup
Juvenile winner West Side Bernie. He ran a career best last out when
he finished 2nd in the Wood Memorial and could be poised for a big
run at an even bigger price. His best races have been with Elliott
in the irons.
Ramon Dominguez - A few of the jockeys I know up in
New York refer to this guy as �the freak�. That is because he wins
30% of his races! Dominguez is the perfect example of a big fish in
a small pond, but he can do just as good when other great riders are
opposing him. His best Kentucky Derby performance came in 2006 when
he finished second underneath long shot Bluegrass Cat. Dominguez�s
best career win came in 2004 on Better Talk Now when he won the
Breeder�s Cup Turf. He is more than capable, and quite a witty
rider. He is among the best when it comes to adapting to different
pace scenarios. His mount this year will be the Dubai based Desert
Party. He finished 2nd last out in the UAE Derby and could easily
move forward with a good ride from Dominguez.
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