One of the most interesting and mysterious occupations inside the world of horse racing is that of a jockey’s agent. Persons who work behind the scenes with jockeys that we hardly ever get to know anything about what they do.
But, we do know in many cases what is needed to get started as an agent is a pencil and some patience. At Hastings Racecourse, there are five jockey agents representing the majority of the leading riders.
The top two jockeys in the standings as of September are Enrique Gonzalez and Amadeo Perez. They both have Agent, Travis (Trapper) Barroby, who has now added David Lopez to his list of Jockeys. Longtime agent Gord Rumble represents Aaron Gryder and Richard Hamel. While former rider, now agent Chad Hoverson works for Denis Araujo and Apprentice rider Learie Seecharan. With the dean of local agents Wayne Snow booking mounts for Silvino Morales and Wayne’s brother Daryl handling red-hot Antonio Reyes. Two riders booking their own rides are Sahin Civaci and Jeffery Burningham.
“This can be a pretty tough place,” said agent Hoverson. “There are so many stables already committed to jockeys it makes it very tough to find live horses (horses with a high chance of winning) to ride. There’s just less and less availability, the options are not there, you can work as hard as you can but the top horses are not there for you to ride.”
This sums up how tough it has become for some very capable riders to catch the eyes of trainers. Which makes this interesting for local racing fans, but extremely difficult for some seasoned jockeys to best show their skills.
KUDOS: Among strong performances from last weekend’s BC Derby was Antonio Reyes riding both winners of the $100,000 Sadie Diamond (Dancin Shoes) and the $100,000 Jack Diamond Futurity (Dat Day).
For agent Daryl Snow, it was an afternoon to remember. “Antonio and I have been together for three years,” said Snow, “and ever since we got together, it was always the case, I was working for him, not the opposite. And the first time he exercised Dancin Shoes, she was young and unraced. He came back with this big smile, telling Barb and me, she’s going to be a good one.”
Reyes was right, in her first start ($50,000 BC Debutante) she won easily. The two-year-old Cross Traffic filly followed that victory up easily winning Saturday’s $100,000 Sadie Diamond Futurity.
Staying with Dancin Shoes, she was bred and owned by Kelowna’s, David and Delaurlyn Pihl. “Dancin Shoes was a late foal,” said Pihl. “And while her mother (Andtheliviniseasy) was giving birth, she developed complications. And began hemorrhaging then our vet told us, she was going to die and we should get the foal out immediately. As soon as we got the baby was out, the mare got so excited and jumped to her feet. For the next few days, my wife bottled fed the foal with fluids. And she began getting better. We quickly noticed the foal was very smart and a fast learner. But, because she was a late foal, we were having trouble selling her to anyone or take to a yearling sale. She’s (Dancin Shoes) really an amazing story and we’re so blessed with what happened.”
The owners are hoping her next race will be the $75,000 Fantasy on September 29. Among her possible rivals, are George Gilberts, Summerland, with an impressive earlier win on the Derby Day program. Now, this would make for one exciting race for everyone.
KUDOS CONTINUES! Owners B C Stables & Paul Caravetta and trainer John Morrison for wisely making the correct decision to give the amazing Here’s Hannah, winner of the $100,000 British Columbia Oaks, a breakaway from racing for the winter.
“Here’s Hanna has been a dream horse for us.” said Morrison, “she has done everything we asked her to do. So she is going to the farm for some rest and relation. It’s our way of saying ‘Thank You’ for giving us so much joy.”
Thanks to Greg (Dr. Sport) Douglas, Director of Media Relations and Special Events at Hastings Racecourse, for inviting the Sedin twins (Henrik and Daniel) and the Honourable Wally Oppal to be guest presenters on BC Derby Day.
A big thank you also to the local horse breeders for putting on a great Yearling and Mixed Sale Tuesday at Thunderbird Show Park. “Overall the sale was a success,” said Ole Nielson, President of BCTOBA, “I think the quality horse’s sold well. Which was good most of the horses sold, all in all our main objective is having horses remain in this Province, which I feel was accomplished.”