A bad crash in a race earlier this week not only sidelined jockey Irad Ortiz Jr., but was costly on Saturday’s Belmont Stakes map.
Ortiz had to remove his 12 mounts due to his injuries, including a spin on Known Agenda in the $ 1.5 million Belmont Stakes.
The jockeys who took over the rides got hot horses, five of them won the first nine races, three of which were guided by Ortiz’s younger brother, Jose.
Jose Ortiz won the first race with Wit ($ 2.90), the $ 400,000 Woody Stephens with Drain the Clock ($ 17) and the $ 500,000 Ogden Phipps with Letruska ($ 4.40).
Flavian Prat replaced Irad Ortiz in the second race and won with Soft Power ($ 11.20), while Javier Castellano took over and won with Search Results ($ 3.80) in Acorn’s $ 400,000.
Irad Ortiz was trampled and hit on the head by the horse ridden by Jose after he fell, but only needed stitches on his left arm and head. Jose Ortiz said on Friday that his brother was doing well, adding: “It could have been a lot worse.”
SILVER STATE WINS 1 MILLION DOLLARS
Silver State with Ricardo Santana Jr. on board won the Metropolitan $ 1 million in length over By My Standards with Mischevious Alex third and the Knicks favorite fourth in the five-horse field.
The 4-year-old coached by Steve Asmussen has won his last six races. The victory earned Silver State a spot in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile this fall.
The scene at the Belmont Stakes was a return to normal, although it wasn’t quite the crowd of over 100,000 that would attend if a Triple Crown was in play. On the one hand, it was quieter. than usual.
Most maskless fans had no trouble finding room to wander the expansive grandstand hours before the $ 1.5 million, 1 1/2 mile race unfolded. As New York state lifted the attendance cap as part of easing restrictions on the pandemic, crowds had grown to around 11,000 by mid-afternoon.
There was no crowd possible because fans had to buy tickets in advance.
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AP Sports Writer Stephen Whyno contributed.