Jockey Stewart Elliott suffered a fractured rib when kicked by a horse Monday and is expected to be out 1-2 weeks with a tentative comeback date of Pacific Classic Day.
“We had worked some horses and were doing more rounds walking between barns when a horse on a hot walker (machine) kicked out and caught him ,” agent Nelson Arroyo said. Elliott, in his first season at Del Mar, has three wins, eight seconds and two thirds from 35 mounts with purse earnings of $343,640. He won the Best Pal Stakes aboard Skyway for trainer Mark Casse.
In other Del Mar jockey news, Hall of Fame rider Mike Smith followed up his weekend stakes double of victories aboard Enterprising in the La Jolla Handicap on Saturday and Moulin de Mougin in the John C. Mabee Stakes on Sunday, his 49th birthday, with a gathering of about 20 family members and friends.
“We just stayed home, enjoyed being together and ate tacos,” said Smith. The Mabee was the fourth stakes win of the meeting, most by any rider, and the 43rd all-time at Del Mar for Smith.
Smith, who was born in Roswell, New Mexico, said he is “not a big believer,” in the stories of a flying saucer crash there in 1947.
“I never got caught up in all that,” said Smith, who was a Roswell-area resident until the age of 14-15. “ When I was there, I was mostly about being around horses. I lived in a little town 15-16 miles away and we didn't go to Roswell much, just for shopping and that stuff.”
Smith, with 13 wins from 58 mounts, is fourth in the jockey standings. In a three-way tie for the lead, with 16 wins each, are Rafael Bejarano, Elvis Trujillo and Kent Desormeaux.
Tyler Baze, still one win away from career victory No. 2000, has six scheduled mounts on Wednesday's card, two of them pick-ups — one for the injured Elliott, the other for Corey Nakatani who has been excused due to illness. They are: Uptown Big Brown (1st, 6-1), Little Jerry (3rd, 5-1), Goyan (4th, 4-1), Hone In (5th, 10-1), Cat Meeting (6th, 3-1) and Aperfectdaytofly (8th, 3-1).
Cindy Niemetz of the International Racing Bureau reports that Jamie Spencer will journey from Europe to ride Toast Of New York in the Pacific Classic. Spencer has been aboard for four of the 3-year-old colt's six starts, among them the victory in the $2 million UAE Derby in March in Dubai.
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