Bejarano Nears Another Santa Anita Title

Jockey Rafael Bejarano signs autographs the day before the Preakness

If Santa Anita’s jockeys’ race were a political election, Rafael Bejarano would be declared the winner in a landslide. With a 26-win lead over his closest competitor and only seven racing days remaining in the 71-day meet, some might even call it a mandate.

With four wins from four mounts yesterday, the 30-year-old Peruvian held a commanding 82-56 lead over runner-up Edwin Maldonado and appeared well on his way to his fourth Santa Anita title, even though he rides at Keeneland today and Oaklawn Park tomorrow.

One of Bejarano’s wins Thursday came aboard Top Kisser for Jerry Hollendorfer in the seventh race. It marked the 22nd time from 35 rides this meet riding for the Hall of Fame trainer that they have landed in the winner’s circle, nearly 63 percent.

Bejarano is among the leaders nationally, as well. Through April 9, he ranked fourth in purse earnings with more than $3.8 million and was ninth in wins with 72.

Joe Ferrer, his agent of eight years, says all the kudos should go to Bejarano.

“Give all the credit to Rafael,” Ferrer said. “I’ve never seen him ride better. He’s done it all by himself. He’s done an incredible job. He’s getting better and better with age.”

Told he should receive at least some plaudits, Ferrer was respectfully dismissive.

“It’s good to ride 4-5 shots,” he said.



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Older Comments about Bejarano Nears Another Santa Anita Title...

Rafael was quoted in a recent DRF article as saying he did have a few options for the Derby, but didn't go into details. My guess is, if Overanalyze doesn't fair well in AK Derby, and S99 gets in, I'll be doing a week long Rain Dance leading up to the Derby! Its obvious Calvin will win Winstar Stablemates popularity contest between Calvin and Rosie. Total joke of a PR tactic leading the public to believe they'll decide who rides Rev, when they know very well they'd be choosing the rider who has already won a derby for them, 3 of the last 6 Derbys, and a Churchill Downs icon.
25th win.
5,7, and 11 look good, Anna, but it's going to be Black Caviar.
Worth staying up for Mary. Report back on the paddock parade. Happy midnight to you.
sorry i didn't get who jbaby was to put together your surfer wave bit. oh well..Go BC!!!
No. Just staying up for Black Caviar.
jbaby? who? lol and Mary, are you drinking fine wine tonite?
Sorry, Paddy, jbaby beat you to the educating about his favorite jockey. 1/16 pole, ten seats up, jockey's surfer wave, all that. Best part was where Bejarano first rode in the U.S.
One of these days ya'll will catch on! RB is nothing short of fine wine getting better with age. If it weren't for Winstar's popularity vote on who should ride Revolutionary drowned out by Calvin and Rosie, Rafael would be up! No one riding better right now. Congrats again, Rafael!!!...we're very blessed to have you out here in CA...{Fist pumps}

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