Rodriguez, Russell Finish As Preakness Top Jockey, Trainer

Jaime Rodriguez | MJC

Jockey Jaime Rodriguez won twice on Monday's Memorial Day holiday program to clinch his first riding title at historic Pimlico Race Course, while Brittany Russell left Old Hilltop with her third straight leading trainer crown at the Preakness Meet.

Rodriguez won 12 times, three more than runners-up Jorge Ruiz and Sheldon Russell.

“It was a tight race for me. Everybody was pretty much even. It was fun,” Rodriguez said. “All the horses ran good.”

It is the fifth riding title in Maryland for Rodriguez, who earlier this year won Laurel Park's winter Heritage Meet and was second to then-apprentice J.G. Torrealba at the subsequent spring stand. He previously registered multi-win days at Pimlico May 9, 10 and 26, and also won once each on the GII Black-Eyed Susan S. and GI Preakness S. programs May 17-18.

Russell finished with eight wins from 35 starters, including two-win days on May 12 and 16. Jose Corrales won twice Monday to move into a tie for second with Kieron Magee at six wins.

“It is cool. We kind of point for the meet,” Russell said. “It's just a fun meet for us. My team works so hard. It's a lot of work for them. I do have a string here, but we run a lot of horses. I'm just proud of everybody. Everybody worked really hard, and I feel like we deserve it.”

Among Russell's victories was Apple Picker in the $100,000 Skipat S. on the Preakness undercard. Third on the same program with Prince of Jericho in the GIII Chick Lang S., Russell earned $7,000 for having the fourth-most points in stakes races in the Maryland Jockey Club's annual Preakness Weekend trainer bonus series. She won the top prize of $25,000 for having the most points in non-stakes races.

In all she started 23 horses at Pimlico from May 16 to 18, including 19 over Black-Eyed Susan and Preakness days.

Married to Sheldon Russell with two children, Brittany Russell credits assistants Luis Barajas at Laurel, Emma Wolfe at Fair Hill, Sam Hopkins at Delaware and Damon Gladden at Pimlico for being instrumental in the stable's success.

Russell made history in 2023 as the first woman to lead the annual standings in Maryland with 118 wins at Laurel and Pimlico, setting season highs across the board with 687 starters, 177 wins, 141 seconds, 96 thirds and $7,996,867 in purse earnings, ranking 11th nationally in wins and 16th in money won.

It is Russell's first meet title this year and seventh overall, four coming at Pimlico. Through the first five months of 2024 she has 52 wins from 247 starters with more than $2.4 million in purses earned.

Not a subscriber? Click here to sign up for the daily PDF or alerts.

Copy Article Link

Liked this article? Read more like this.

  1. War of Will's Curahee Graduates at Colonial Downs
  2. Thursday's Insights: Pricey Juvenile Italian Soiree Debuts
  3. All Eyes on Seize the Grey for MyRacehorse Partners
  4. Post Time Answers The Bell In The GI Met Mile
  5. Maryland Rallies Behind Outrider Kreidel after Post-Preakness Van Accident

Never miss another story from the TDN

Click Here to sign up for a free subscription.