LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Triple Crown-winning jockey Mike Smith will be honored by the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters with the Mr. Fitz Award.
The Hall of Fame rider will receive the award, named for longtime trainer “Sunny Jim” Fitzsimmons, for typifying the spirit of racing at the group’s 59th annual awards dinner on Oct. 31 in Louisville, Kentucky.
Smith rode Justify to a sweep of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont this spring for horse racing’s second Triple Crown in four years. The 53-year-old Hall of Famer will be in Louisville to compete in the Breeders’ Cup world championships at Churchill Downs. Smith is the all-time leading rider in Cup history with 26 wins and nearly $36 million in purse earnings.
Others to be honored at the NTWB dinner are former jockey Donna Barton Brothers, who will receive the Jim McKay Award for excellence in broadcasting; publicist Jim Gluckson, with the Joe Palmer Award for meritorious service to racing; and Daily Racing Form writer Marty McGee, with the Walter Haight Award for career excellence in turf writing.
ARCADIA, Calif. — Jockey Rafael Bejarano rode his 4,000th career winner at Santa Anita.
He guided filly Portal Creek to a 3 }-length victory in the third race Saturday for trainer Bob Hess Jr.
The 36-year-old Peruvian jockey says Santa Anita has always been a special place for him. He won six races at the Southern California track in his first day riding there on April 8, 2006.
Bejarano came to the U.S. in 2002 after training at a national riding academy in Peru. He led the U.S. in victories with 455 in 2004.
He has career purse earnings of $200,611,833 and five victories in the Breeders’ Cup.
OCEANPORT, N.J. — Maximum Security will race this weekend for the first time since being disqualified in the Kentucky Derby.
The Jason Servis-trained colt was among six 3-year-olds entered Thursday for the $150,000 Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park on Sunday.
The 1 1/16-mile race in New Jersey will be the first in more than two months for Maximum Security. The colt galloped 1 1/8 miles here Wednesday.
In the Derby on May 2, Maximum Security got to the finish line 1}-lengths ahead of Country House. The victory was overturned 22 minutes later when the stewards disqualified the 9-2 second choice because of interference with eventual Preakness winner War of Will and other horses.
It marked the first time in the 145-year history of the Derby that the first-place finisher was disqualified for interference.