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HRN Original Blog:
Zipse At The Track

Rosie Napravnik: Prime Time On and Off the Track

Rosie Napravnik 615 X 400
Photo: Eclipse Spotswire - Alex Evers
Tonight on CBS, Rosie Napravnik will be featured on a segment of the ever popular news program, “60 Minutes”. The show is scheduled to begin at 7:00 p.m. on the East Coast, (check local listings for airtimes in your area), and the feature on the popular rider will be hosted by correspondent Bob Simon. Heady stuff for the 25-year-old jockey, but Rosie deserves all the attention she is getting.

She may have a pretty face, but making the mistake of taking her immense talent and will to win for granted, has long since come and gone. In a male dominated profession, only Joel Rosario has won more races this year, (Rosario has seven more victories in 48 more mounts at the time of writing) than the New Jersey native. Never afraid to tangle with the boys, Rosie is the only female rider to be found anywhere in the Top 50 of the list, and she also will be the only woman riding in next week’s Kentucky Derby. As a matter of fact, Napravnik is already on a short list of the most successful female jockeys in history. Her ascent up the ladder to be thought of as one of the very best riders in the nation has been rapid.

Just less than three years ago, Rosie became the first female jockey to win a graded stakes race in the state of Texas when she rode Redding Colliery to victory in the Lone Star Park Handicap on Memorial Day of 2010. Eleven months later, she won her first million dollar race aboard Pants on Fire in the Louisiana Derby, while becoming the first woman to take Fair Grounds’ signature race. She would subsequently ride that same horse to a ninth place finish in the Kentucky Derby, bettering the previous best ever finish by a female rider in the Derby of 11th. 

After another million dollar win in last fall’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile with the champion, Shanghai Bobby, and another dominant meet at Fair Grounds, Napravnik is ready to improve upon that 9th place finish in her Kentucky Derby debut.

This year, Rosie will attempt to win the Derby with the unheralded but improving colt, Mylute. Once thought to be a monstrous long shot to be draped in roses on May 4, Mylute impressed with a strong runner-up finish to Revolutionary in the Louisiana Derby. In that final prep for Louisville, the son of Midnight Lute rallied strongly on the outside, before losing a late battle to one of the Kentucky Derby favorites. Since arriving to Churchill Downs, the Tom Amoss charge has impressed in the morning. Because of those reasons, and in no small part to securing the riding services of Rosie Napravnik, his expected odds have plummeted.

I asked Rosie what it would mean to her if she could win the Run for the Roses, and she responded with youthful exuberance. 

"The Kentucky Derby experience, win or lose, is so exhilarating. I can't imagine what it would feel like to win it, but I at least have the chance to find out!"

While Rosie may have yet to win America’s most prestigious race, she is no stranger to success on the big stage at Churchill Downs. After just missing in the 2011 Kentucky Oaks aboard long shot St. John’s River, she became the first female rider to win the prestigious three-year-old filly test in her next try. Napravnik thrilled her fans by winning the classic race aboard the Larry Jones trained Believe You Can on May 4, 2012.

Can Rosie win the Kentucky Derby one year to the day after winning the Oaks? That remains to be seen, but one thing is for sure, the world will be watching thoroughbred racing’s tough as nails darling. As they will tonight at 7 p.m. Eastern on “60 Minutes”.  



 

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Older Comments about Rosie Napravnik: Prime Time On and Off the Track...

Not putting any more money on mylute. I have $2 for him to win at 120 - 1 and that's it. I don't like Rosie.
Must have sprung for the good stuff. Like to Buds' comment.
I love these stories. (not really) Who cares if shes a she, he , or an it. Out here in California we could give a shit if she was an elf! The fact is she a damn good rider. If it was a man we wouldnt use the word cold, we would say confident, cocky, ect. The best thing is now Mylute will take a whole bunch of undeserved money, cuz people want to bet on "the girl jockey", I say great, give me my horses at a better price. This same thing happened a couple years ago when Pants on Fire went off at 7-1 when the horse MLO were 20-1. Bring in the dumb money. More for us!
I can understand if Rosie seemed cold. She's in a sport that is runner by males. Especially, in KY where male chauvinistic mentally was originated. They fight hard for excluding women arising in the racing field. She has an attitude of survival. In order for her to stay on top of the game, this is the way to make it. Many have tried but failed to get the respect of their male counter parts. It's reality in racing that is slowly changing but not there yet..
touchy comment button this morning.
That's how I saw the interview, too, goblin.
That's how I saw the interview, too, goblin.
That's how I saw the interview, too, goblin.
I wouldn't characterize Rosie's demeanor as cold at all, or even reserved, really. To me she seemed to be projecting a sense of dignity, which I believe she actually possesses, and was probably attempting to maintain lest she come across as silly or "girly" to those who would want to find fault. I wish the questions had been more about horseracing in depth, as well, but that a national news program featured the subject at all is fairly remarkable. Someone above commented that Julie Krone will be considered the best female jockey of all time---the jury is still out on that.
On that point, I agree with you, SH. Though I do believe that because she was not given the opportunity to talk about Mylute, that he should go to post with higher odds than originally thought.
As I said, I was not upset as much with what Rosie said. SHe did the best with what she was give, I just wish she had been asked different questions. It was 35 minutes of gender discrimination with 2 second random clips of horse racing.
Rosie wasn't cold so much as she was reserved, and she certainly wasn't complaining about being a woman in a man's sport. She was asked a question, and she responded honestly.
^ Watching.
FInally got around to wathing it. I was pretty dissappointed. Not really with Rosie... (Though she did seem pretty ... cold?) Mostly just with the questions asked. I wish it had delt more with actual horse racing, then pondering on gender discrimination and asking how much she weighed. He father's mustache is pretty epic though.
Nice segment on 60 Minutes.
hrtv (@hrtv.com) is the best investment i've ever made:) so cheap!!
here's the link to cbs 60 minutes...the video isn't coming up for me but my internet is iffy. http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50145792n
jenna, the drunk nutcases who are sore because they lost tickets heckle everyone. Baffert got it pretty bad with GOD in their first Big Cap and Cordero used to get bottles thrown at him...
That part made me laugh, Jenna.
Dr. Jenna, I'm looking forward to seeing it on youtube. Since I've move to Birmingham, AL, I've yet to subscribe to tv. BUT, I did subscribe to HRTV at $9 a month!

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Meet Brian Zipse 

Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing since birth. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra and Zenyatta. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. 
  
As Managing Editor of Horse Racing Nation, Brian authors a daily column as Zipse at the Track, or ZATT for short, and adds his editorial flare to the overall content of the website. Brian also serves on the the Board of Directors of ReRun Thoroughbred Adoption and is a Vox Populi committee member. 
  
A graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives in Suburban Chicago with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra, where he is a professional golf instructor when he is not following the horses.