Three-time Kentucky Derby-winning jockey Calvin Borel
crept closer to a major career milestone at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots on Friday night, tallying career win 4,999 aboard promising 2-year-old Malibu High in the second race, an entry-level allowance at six furlongs over a sloppy main track.
“It’s hard to get there (to 5,000 wins) but I’ve been riding for twenty-something years and I’ve been on good horses,” Borel said. “This colt was ready today. My brother had him sharp and he responded for me.”
Malibu High remained undefeated in his second career start for trainer Cecil Borel, the rider’s brother. The Malibu Moon colt bided his time while John Good, Black Sheep Racing and Loose On the Lead’s Agave Cat led early through early fractions of 22.38 and 46.24. As he did in perhaps his most famous ride, aboard Mine That Bird in the 2009 Kentucky Derby, Borel brought his charge up the rail while skipping through the slop. This time he won by three-quarters of a length, stopping the clock in 1:11.50.
Malibu High paid $6.40, $5 and $3.40 and raised his career earnings to $58,980. Agave Cat held on for second and paid $5.40 and $3.40, while Jerry Namy’s Favorite Uncle returned $3 to show.
Cecil Borel said he would nominate Malibu High to stakes at Fair Grounds (the Jan. 18 Grade III, $200,000 Lecomte Stakes) and Oaklawn Park (the Jan. 21 $150,000 Smarty Jones Stakes) as possible next starts.
“He has all the talent in the world,” Calvin Borel said. “He’s a very smart horse; he’ll win on his smartness. I think he’ll beat some good horses.”
Calvin Borel said it was unlikely he would have any more mounts before the start of the Oaklawn Park season on Jan. 11.