What a great race for the jockey title at Hollywood Park! Rafael Bejarano, trying for an unprecedented seventh consecutive SoCal riding crown, led Joel Rosario 53-52 heading into today’s 10-race card. So far through the first seven races, Bejarano and Rosario have each won twice. They both have mounts in the remaining three races, including the $100,000 Grade 3 Affirmed Handicap.
Bejarano will be aboard the 2-1 morning-line favorite Grazen in the Affirmed for trainer Mike Mitchell, who’s picking up steam and already has two winners on today’s program. Rosario will ride 8-1 outsider Quindici Man for Craig Lewis.
This is a race that figures to go down to closing day on Sunday, July 19. With so few horses running these days, both of these jockeys are getting a ton of live mounts and neither figures to go into a prolonged losing streak. The difference could come in days spent out of state running in big stakes races. If either one travels east and misses a day and the other stays home and wins three or four races, that could prove pivotal.
Either way, this is going to be fun to watch.