Mike Smith

Velazquez, Smith Re-Elected to Jockeys' Guild

Hall of Fame riders John Velazquez and Mike Smith were re-elected as co-chairmen at the Jockeys' Guild's annual meeting, which was held virtually Dec. 7. The riders in attendance also re-elected Javier Castellano and Julien Leparoux, along with newly elected Quarter Horse jockey James Flores, as vice-chairs; Joel Campbell as treasurer; and Rodney Prescott as secretary. In addition, Alex Birzer, Joe Bravo, and Drayden Van Dyke were re-elected to the board of directors. The members reviewed 2021 financials and the 2022 budget and had a variety of speakers including Senator...

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Lane's End Surfboard Auction Raises Nearly $50K for PDJF

Lane's End Farm helped raise nearly $50,000 for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund (PDJF) with the auction of 20 hand-crafted surfboards, each individually designed to highlight the nursery's stallion roster. The surfboards were created in partnership with the Cornett advertising agency and the Torrance, California-based Chili Surfboards. Prior to being auctioned off to the highest bidders, the surfboards were on public display at Breeders' Cup partner hotels in the Del Mar area as well as the racetrack over Breeders' Cup weekend. John Velazquez, Mike Smith, Drayden Van Dyke and Victor...

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Lane's End Surfboards to Benefit PDJF

Twenty-four handcrafted surfboards representing the entire Lane's End Farm stallion roster will be on display at Del Mar and at Breeders' Cup partner hotels from Nov. 3-6 and will be auctioned off to benefit the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund, according to a press release from the farm Thursday. The PDJF is an independent charitable organization that provides financial assistance to jockeys who have suffered catastrophic injuries. The unique boards will be on public display at the Hyatt Regency, Fairmont Grand, Lodge at Torrey Pines, and L'Auberge—as well as Del Mar...

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Live Telethon to Benefit PDJF Returns to TVG Oct. 17

Hall of Fame jockeys, TVG's on-air talent and other prominent racing personalities will once again take to the phones Sunday, Oct. 17 as TVG and The Jockeys Guild host the third annual telethon to raise money for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund (PDJF). The event, canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic, raised $330,000 in 2019, an increase of more than $100,000 over the inaugural event in 2018. Fan favorite jockeys of today and years past will be on hand live at call centers in California and Kentucky from 12:00...

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Rising Star Seeks BC Berth in American Pharoah

'TDN Rising Star' Corniche (Quality Road) looks to stamp his ticket to the upcoming GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile in Friday's GI American Pharoah S. at Santa Anita. Topping the OBS April sale at $1.5 million, the Speedway Stable colorbearer wired the field for an effortless 4 1/4-length graduation in his 5 1/2-panel unveiling at Del Mar Sept. 4, earning a gaudy 98 Beyer Speed Figure. His breeding indicates this extension to a route of ground should be no problem and with his rail draw, pilot Mike Smith is likely to...

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Pinehurst Wins Runhappy Del Mar Futurity By a 'Fair Way'

Bob Baffert's odds-on favorite in Monday's GI Runhappy Del Mar Futurity did little running, but it was no matter, as Baffert's 'other' colt, Pinehurst (Twirling Candy), picked up the slack and ran away from his foes to give Baffert an incredible 15th victory in the seaside oval's annual closing day feature. Gutting out a hard-fought debut victory as a 17-10 chalk going five furlongs on this track Aug. 1, the $385,000 Keeneland September buy was made a distant second choice despite owning the best Beyer figure in the field as...

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TVG Expands Collaboration With Jockeys

Officials at TVG have announced that members of the Del Mar riding colony will collaborate with the network to enhance its daily coverage of horse racing. Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith, who has appeared in commercial endorsements for TVG in the past, will be joined by his colleagues Umberto Rispoli, Flavien Prat and Jessica Pyfer in contributing to broadcasts, social media content and overall online presence. In addition to periodically wearing cameras on their helmets during races, all the jockeys will make appearances as special guests on the network...

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Life Is Good Justifies the Hype in San Felipe

Representing part of the group that campaigned 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify (Scat Daddy), and sharing a sire and some quirks with last year's Horse of the Year Authentic (Into Mischief), Life Is Good further asserted his position as the best of Bob Baffert's current crop of 3-year-olds Saturday, demolishing his competition in the GII San Felipe S. at Santa Anita. WinStar Farm and CHC Inc.'s 'TDN Rising Star' was a 9 1/2-length sprint winner on debut at Del Mar Nov. 22, and had been off since defeating stablemate Medina...

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Report: Egan, Smith Penalized for Saudi Cup Rides

According to a report on the website HorseRacingPlanet.com, winning jockey David Egan was fined $100,000 and suspended two days for excessive use of the whip when riding Mishriff (Ire) (Make Believe {GB}) to victory in the $20-million Saudi Cup Saturday. The Saudi stewards determined that Egan hit his mount 11 times, one more than the maximum allowed. Egan hit Mishriff several times in the stretch, starting out with his left hand before switching over to his right. In addition, the website reported that Mike Smith was handed a two-day suspension...

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Foley Takes Jockeys Challenge

Irish jockey Shane Foley took top honours in the stc International Jockeys Challenge in Riyadh in Friday after winning two of the four races comprising the contest, which set the stage for Saturday's card that includes the $20-million Saudi Cup. Foley beat just three home in the opening leg of the challenge, which was won by Mike Smith, who was deputizing for jockey John Velazquez whose trip to Saudi was dashed on account of travel-related issues. Foley turned things around in the next race, however, navigating Emblem Star (Take Charge...

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Knicks Go Headed to Saudi Cup; DWC Possible

Coming off a dominant win in the GI Pegasus World Cup Invitational, Knicks Go (Paynter) is scheduled to make his next start in the $20 million Saudi Cup on Feb. 20 in Riyadh. "As long as he breezes well this weekend, we're going to the Saudi Cup," trainer Brad Cox said. "We plan to ship him out Monday [Feb. 8]." Cox said the decision became easier when it became clear that Knicks Go came out of the Pegasus in perfect shape. "The owners [the Korea Racing Authority] would like to...

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American Runners Ready for Return to Riyadh

A year ago, a brigade of American runners dominated results in the inaugural running of the $20-million Saudi Cup, taking four of the top five placings in the world's richest race. Another top-level group of U.S.-based horses are set to return to Riyadh for the second running of the 1 1/8-miles race Feb. 20. Leading the group is Charlatan (Speightstown), who returned from a layoff to record a scintillating victory in the Dec. 26 GI Malibu S. last month. The newly turned 4-year-old worked six furlongs in 1:12.60 (1/5) at...

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