Each week, a series of jockeys at Del Mar will share their thoughts in interviews with members of the TVG team on the weekend’s card and reflect on some of their favorite racing memories.
By Umberto Rispoli (as told to Joaquin Jaime)
In Friday’s Tranquility Lake Stakes, I’m on Paige Anne and the first time I rode her (in the 2020 Grade 3 Santa Ysabel Stakes), I finished fourth well beaten in that race but I was very happy with her performance. She was a traveling very well around the turn and at the quarter pole, she looks like she might be one of the dangers. She drew the one hold and that’s always a question mark but she was on the inside last time she had a some good speed.
On Saturday, I’m on Durante for Doug O’Neill in the eighth race and I really like this colt. He’s a very nice-looking horse, very professional. He’s fast from the gate which I think is very important for 2-year-old races on the dirt. He hasn’t show any problems. He’s doing everything well. He’s sound, he’s good so I wish then he’s not going to let me down on race day.
In Saturday’s eleventh race, I’m on Trevor T. The first time (last October) I won on him. The second time (tenth in an allowance test on July 31), there was tremendous pace in the race, they went very fast. He’s a horse who has a tendency to be keen a little bit. We actually were sitting back running behind the rabbits but he got tired at the top of the stretch and I think that’s because he had a long, long break and he definitely needed a race. I’m hoping he’s going to be more fit this time and I think he is worth a say.
In Sunday’s Shared Belief Stakes, I’m on Rock Your World. I’ve been on him in the last 2-3 works and he’s doing great. He’s working better on a dirt then on the grass. He gives me a different feeling. Going into a race like this, we have to see what happens but I don’t think it’s going to be a big field, which will help him. I think he needs to find back some confidence but for me, I’m already happy to be back on him. I have a good feeling and you know it’s not the fastest bunch of horses from the gate so being on the outside will be pretty good. As I said, his fitness is good. He’s ready, so I have a lot of confidence. It’s going to be a tough race, but the horse is going to be there for sure.
The difference I feel with him on the dirt is he’s traveling in hand. He’s carrying you, he looks like he has more grip on the dirt. On the grass, I was off the bridle probably because Del Mar is a different tiny track. The turns are sharper than somewhere else, so probably it’s not ideal for him. That’s the only difference I can find. But you know, I do really like his works on the dirt. I’m pretty sure he is a dirt horse. He won on grass, he’s won everywhere but I have a better feeling from him on a dirt.
He looks fantastic as always. I like him because he’s a big black horse and you know, the first time I rode him, I remember he intimidated me a little bit because he can look very well. Physically he didn’t lose anything. So, I find the same exact horse then I rode at Santa Anita in the Pasadena Stakes. I’m pleased with him and I have a lot of confidence so let’s go and make a make this happen again.