Axel Concepcion

Godolphin's Encino Gets By Epic Ride In John Battaglia Upset

Godolphin homebred Encino broke his maiden over course and distance Jan. 26 and parlayed that right into points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby with a win in Saturday night's John Battaglia Memorial S. at Turfway Park. Debuting as the beaten favorite, albeit by only a neck, over a mile on the Tapeta Dec. 29, the Brad Cox trainee stepped up with a gate-to-wire run second-time out in a better than it seemed half-length win. Sent at 5-1 Saturday behind race favorite Epic Ride, Encino broke nearly widest of...

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Fifth Eclipse for Irad Ortiz, Concepcion Named Champion Apprentice

Irad Ortiz, Jr., who continued to break earnings records in 2023, won his fourth Eclipse Award as champion jockey Thursday night in Florida. Ortiz, whose mounts earned $39,192,585 last year, rode Eclipse finalists White Abarrio, Elite Power and Goodnight Olive to Breeders' Cup victories in 2023. The Eclipse Award for leading Apprentice Jockey went to Axel Concepcion. The 18-year-old Puerto Rican led apprentice riders in both wins and earnings having ridden the winners of 199 races and earners of $5,179,154. He was also the leading rider at Laurel Park's spring...

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Machado, Cox Take Turfway Titles

Jockey Luan Machado, trainer Brad Cox and owner Dixiana Farms were leaders in their respective divisions at Turfway Park's 20-day Holiday Meet which concluded Saturday night. Machado had 21 wins from 98 mounts (21%) to earn his third leading rider title at Florence, Kentucky oval. His previous titles came at the 2019 Winter/Spring Meet and 2018 Holiday Meet. Machado was followed in the standings by apprentice rider Axel Concepcion who had 19 wins. The Holiday Meet was Cox's second leading trainer title at Turfway. His barn, which is represented locally...

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The Week in Review: 'Stars of Tomorrow' Showcases Aspiring Humans as Well as Horses

The annual Thanksgiving weekend "Stars of Tomorrow" card at Churchill Downs is designed to highlight aspiring 2-year-olds right before they launch into their sophomore seasons. An intriguing subplot to this year's edition, however, put the spotlight on several human rather than equine participants who could be on the cusp of bigger and better things. Eighteen-year-old jockey Axel Concepcion just might be on his way to winning an Eclipse Award as the nation's top apprentice for 2023 despite not starting racing at American mainland tracks until Feb. 19 and also having...

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Apprentice Suspended 30 Days For 2nd Time In Week After Another Spill-Marred Delaware Race

Eighteen-year-old jockey Axel Concepcion, who is currently Maryland's top apprentice and is on the cusp of a planned move to Kentucky that could launch him into contention for a rookie rider Eclipse Award, has again been suspended 30 days by the Delaware Park stewards for "careless riding" that caused a rival horse to crash to the track. "This is Apprentice Jockey Axel Concepcion's second incident within a week of causing interference that resulted in a horse falling and a rider to be unseated," stated the Oct. 6  stewards' ruling. Delaware...

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Apprentice Suspended 30 Days for 'Extremely Careless' Riding in Delaware Race that Caused Equine Fatality

Eighteen-year-old jockey Axel Concepcion, who is Maryland's top apprentice this year, has been suspended 30 days for "extremely careless" riding in a Sept. 21 race at Delaware Park that resulted in the euthanization of a rival horse that had fallen. The Sept. 28 Delaware stewards' ruling stated that Concepcion failed "to control and guide his mount, Backwoods Boogie (Red Rocks [IRE]), leaving the starting gate, impeding several horses, and causing the horse Trumpence (Eskendereya) to fall, which resulted in a fatal injury to Trumpence. Due to the fallen horse, the...

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The Week in Review: When Derby, Preakness, Belmont Winners Meet at Spa, History Says Someone Else Will Steal Travers

As Tuesday's entry time looms, the GI Travers S. is shaping up as a rare showdown of the three winners of this season's Triple Crown races. That's happened only five times since 1978, and on no occasion during the last 45 years when the winners of those spring Classics all graced the starting gate for Saratoga's "Midsummer Derby" has any one of them emerged victorious. That's a fairly daunting stat considering how the match-up of the GI Kentucky Derby, GI Preakness S. and GI Belmont S. winners is essentially what...

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Magee, Concepcion Capture Laurel Titles

Veteran trainer Kieron Magee and five-pound apprentice jockey Axel Concepcion claimed their respective meet titles as Laurel Park closed its spring meet Sunday. Magee, 62, entered the eight-race, closing-day program without a starter, but an 11-8 lead over Jamie Ness in the trainer standings. Hugh McMahon won twice Sunday to pass Ness for second, while Brittany Russell wound up fourth with seven wins. "It feels great because I'm down to 25 horses. To pull off a training title with 25 horses, that takes some doing," Magee said. "I lost a...

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