HorseracingFLA Staff Report
The legions of fans who will often bet on a horse because Paco Lopez is riding will have three opportunities today at the Gulfstream Park West meet.
Lopez this week returned to South Florida from Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J,, where he led jockeys in wins for the third time in four years.
On Thursday he rode his first winner in three starts thus far at the GP West meet. Gulfstream Park is holding that meet at Calder under a lease agreement with that track.
Lopez has mounts today in the fifth, seventh and ninth races. First post is 12:35 p.m. for the ten-race card.
He usually returns to South Florida in November. He led jockeys in wins at Gulfstream Park’s championship meet in 2010 and 2011 and is a perennial top five finisher at hat meet.
Lopez’s Thursday’s win was in the third race, a starter allowance at six furlongs, aboard Lucky Bella.
That 3-year-old filly is owned and trained by Edwin Broome, who gained his first GP West win after returning from a summer and early fall at Monmouth Park.
Trainer Jorge Navarro also is back from Monmouth Park, where he led in wins this year.
On Thursday he sent out two winners at GP West. He has six wins in11 starts, and is tied with Todd Pletcher for third place in wins.
Marcus Vitali leads the meet with nine wins, and Antonio Sano is second with eight victories.
Through Thursday, Edgard Zayas leads with 23 wins after 23 days of the GP West meet. Tyler Gaffalione is second with 21, followed by Eddie Castro with 17.
While Lopez is not a threat to the leaders in the GP West standings, he no doubt will win an impressive percentage of races and be ready for the Gulfstream Park championship meet that begins on Dec. 5.
* On Saturday, GP West will have its Sunshine Millions Preview card, with eight stakes races. All have $100,000 purses and are restricted to Florida breds.
First post is 12:35 p.m. for the ten-race card.
The leading riders will all be busy. Gaffalione has nine mounts. The other numbers for mounts are: Lopez-8; Zayas–7; Castro–6.