Geroux lands 'Best' mounts for American Pharoah, Chandelier

September 25, 2018 09:10am
Jockey Florent Geroux will travel to Santa Anita Park this weekend to ride in multiple stakes, with hopes of picking up mounts for the 2018 Breeders’ Cup hosted at one of his regular tracks this year in Churchill Downs.

Geroux’s agent, Doug Bredar, said that the jockey has the call for both Brill and Rowaytontwo juveniles owned by Larry Best’s OXO Equine, LLC, and trained by Jerry Hollendorfer.

Both mounts were debut winners before running in Del Mar’s Grade 1 races for 2-year-olds. Brill, a Medaglia d’Oro filly, ran fourth in the Del Mar Debutante while Rowayton, a colt by Into Mischief, was runner up in the Del Mar Futurity. Drayden Van Dyke was aboard in their previous starts.

Saturday at Santa Anita, an automatic berth into the Breeders’ Cup and points toward the 2019 Kentucky Derby and Oaks are on the line. Brill is set to contest the Grade 1 Chandelier Stakes for juvenile fillies while Rowayton will be entered for the Grade 1 American Pharoah Stakes, formerly the FrontRunner, with Best opting to rest stablemate Instagrand and bypass the race.

“I got offered those mounts and I had some offers also at Churchill Downs,” said Geroux, who won last year's Breeders' Cup Classic on Gun Runner, “but I thought it would make a little more sense to try to get some horses for the Breeders’ Cup, especially for the 2-year-old races.”

The Chandelier is a qualifying race the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies and the American Pharoah gives the winner a free trip to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.

While Best has only been an owner in horse racing for a few years, the former medical device executive hasn’t been afraid to drop seven figures at sales. Brill herself was a $1 million yearling purchase.

Bredar and Geroux both expressed interest in working with Best going forward, with Georux noting he appears to be buying nice horses. This year, Best campaigned Instilled Regard, a $1.05 million 2-year-old purchase, to a fourth-place run in the Grade 1 Kentucky Derby.

“We’re just hoping we can put something good together and hopefully it can carry on for the future,” Geroux said.

Bredar also said they would “absolutely” hope to work with Best in the future.

“He is going to be a major player in the industry and we’re very excited about the opportunity to go out there,” the agent added.

Geroux will also be ride Grade 3 winner Queen Blossom in the Grade 1 Rodeo Drive on Saturday, a “Win and You’re In” race for the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf. Queen Blossom, a 5-year-old Irish mare, was bought by Abbondanza Racing, LLC, and Medallion Racing for $220,000 at the Fasig-Tipton November Sale and is trained by Richard Baltas.

Notably, Geroux is also the regular rider of Monomoy Girl, a top 3-year-old filly expected to be among headliners in the Breeders' Cup Distaff.

 

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