Edited Jockeys Guild Release — If there is one thing that remains constant at Saratoga each week, it’s Joel Rosario winning more graded stakes races. His three graded stakes wins this week led to Jockey of the Week for August 1 through August 7.
The award, which is voted on by a panel of racing experts, honors jockeys who are members of the Jockeys’ Guild, the organization which represents more than 1050 active, retired and permanently disabled jockeys in the United States.
The first graded stakes of Week 4 was the Grade II National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame for three-year-olds. The reigning Eclipse Award winner as Outstanding trainer, Brad Cox, tapped Rosario to ride Ready to Purrform for the one mile inner turf test.
Breaking from post 5 in the field of eight, Ready to Purrform took the lead and continued to be the one to catch at the top of the stretch and maintained his lead to win by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:33.99.
“He put in a nice run today,” said Rosario. “He showed a different style by going to the lead, but he was able to keep it going with that speed.”
Riding for Hall of Fame trainer, Bill Mott on Saturday, Rosario was aboard War Like Goddess who was defending her title in the Grade II Glens Falls for fillies and mares four years-old and up. Off as the favorite in the field of seven, War Like Goddess was fourth through the mile.
Around the final turn, War Like Goddess moved up on the outside and edged clear holding off pace setter Temple City Terror in the final yards to win by 1-1/4 lengths in 2:29.33 for the 12 furlongs.
“The pace was slow, but the whole time, I had confidence in her, and when I turned her loose and wanted to go, she went,” said Rosario who was riding War Like Goddess for the third time.
In the first of three Grade I races on Saturday, trainer Wesley Ward gave Rosario a leg up on Chi Town Lady in the Grade I Longines Test for three-year-old fillies sprinting seven furlongs. Off at odds of 17-1, and breaking from the outer most post 7, Chi Town Lady settled at the back of the field as Hot Peppers led the way.
Hot Peppers and race favorite Matareya raced stride-for-stride in the stretch as Chi Town Lady surged from the far outside. The trio battled down the stretch with Chi Town Lady pulling ahead to finish 1-1/2 lengths in front of Hot Peppers and Matareya in the final time of 1:23.87.
“They went fast in front and she came with a run,” said Rosario. “That was an amazing race.”
Amazing could also describe Rosario as he posted his 10th graded stakes win of the Saratoga meet.