Jockey John Jacinto, sidelined by a broken wrist
suffered during training hours at Fair Grounds on Dec. 2, visited the winner’s
circle for the first time since his injury on Feb. 18 when he guided South
Georgia Tigers’ Ide Ball to a 2 3/4-length tally for trainer Eddie
Johnston during the most recent Starlight Racing program.
A year ago, Jacinto finished the Fair Grounds season third
in the standings with 66 wins, but due to his extended absence this winter, the
victory aboard Ide Ball was only Jacinto’s fifth since the 2010-2011 Fair
Grounds meeting began on Nov. 25.
Last Friday, the unassuming but always smiling Jacinto
doubled that total, winning five races on the 10-race program to bring his
seasonal record up to double digits.
“I’ve always felt that everything happens for a reason,”
said Jacinto, “and I try to think good thoughts all the time because I feel
that God will take care of good people. He helped me through all the time I
wasn’t able to ride, and when I can come back and win five races in one day
like that it makes me feel like he’s helping me once again.
“I feel very good since I’ve come back this time,” said
Jacinto. “I feel stronger than I did before and I’m looking forward to the rest
of the season here. When the season is over here, I’m going to go back to Lafayette.
I won the title there last year, and I’m going to try to win another one.”
Jacinto’s five-win Friday began in the second half of the
Daily Double on Kim and John Glenney’s Fancy Fiona for trainer John
Glenney and continued in the next race aboard William Deckwa Jr’s Lee
City, once again for Eddie Johnston. The 31-year-old native of Lima,
came back to the winner’s circle after the fifth astride Love Partnership
Interests’ Texas Citizen for conditioner Dallas Keen, continued
after the seventh on TRACC Masters Racing Stable’s Dynamic Time for
trainer Alex Dunn, and concluded in the finale aboard Bryant Prentice
III’s Run Matty for trainer Tony Richey.
MIGUEL MENA THREE WINS SHY OF 1,000-CAREER WIN MILESTONE
Jockey Miguel Mena entered Monday’s nine-race
program at Fair Grounds with 997 wins and five mounts scheduled for the day.
Mena’s Monday begins in the fifth race with the mount on
Dan Lynch, Ken Sentel and Merrill Scherer’s Goodtimehadbyall for trainer
Merrill Scherer at 5-1 in the morning line and continues in the sixth on
Northpointe Thoroughbred’ A Million Fields for trainer Steven Duke
at 8-1. Mena comes right back in the seventh on Chris Greene and Ralph and Don
Stroope’s Eur O So Bad for conditioner Ronny Werner at 8-1 and
concludes in the eighth on Israel Flores Horses’ Debris for Tony
Richey, also at 8-1 in the morning line.
Mena, incidentally, celebrated a five-win day at Fair
Grounds a week ago to jump well into the 1,000-career win milestone countdown.
RICK MOCKLIN RETURNS TO ANNOUNCER’S BOOTH FOR THREE
Jockey agent Rick Mocklin, who has been handling the
engagements of jockey Richard Eramia at Fair Grounds for the last two
winters, returned to his previous career as a racetrack announcer for three
races Friday while regular Fair Grounds announcer John G. Dooley
fulfilled another commitment.
“I filled in for John for a couple of races last season,
but it had been over a year since I stepped up to the microphone,” Mocklin
said. “In the first race I called, I felt a little shaky, but in the next two I
felt I did a pretty good job. I enjoyed it a lot.
“It’s good to keep in practice,” said Mocklin. “It was a
lot of fun. It made me realize how much I miss it, but, of course, the money’s
a lot better for me as an agent.”
Mocklin served as the longtime announcer at Jefferson Downs
from September of 1974 until November of 1992. He was the back-up announcer at
Fair Grounds during the years Tony Bentley was the Thoroughbred
announcer here, and also manned the horns at Ellis Park for the 1994, 1995 and
1996 summer seasons at the western Kentucky oval. Mocklin was also the
announcer for the first two Thoroughbred meetings at Sam
when that track opened.
“It’s the kicks,” said Mocklin of calling races over a
public address system. “It’s fun to do.”
Dooley was busy participating in a Fair Grounds Human
Resources initiative called “Walk-a-Day” requiring full-time employees to spend
part of a day performing the job duties of a coworker in another department.
Dooley worked as a busboy and waiter in the Clubhouse.