Defending Top Jockey Samy Camacho Rides Four Winners Wednesday At Tampa

Defending Tampa Bay Downs jockey champion Samy Camacho rode four winners on Wednesday, gaining ground on four-time champion Antonio Gallardo in the 2019-2020 Oldsmar standings. Camacho, who won the Grade II, $400,000 Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby on March 7, trails Gallardo 85-80 entering Friday’s scheduled eight-race card. Camacho captured the second race on the […]

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Journeyman Gary Wales ‘Took A Shot’ By Moving To Tampa, Has Been Rewarded

The SenÞor Tequila Mexican Grill Jockey of the Month, Gary Wales, wasn’t born when rock-and-roll legend Janis Joplin’s version of “Me and Bobby McGee” spoke to a generation of young people searching for truth and meaning almost 50 years ago. But a snippet from the late musician’s best-known song can easily be applied to the […]

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‘Put The Horses In The Right Place’: Rodriguez’ Hands-On Approach Paying Off At Tampa

Before beginning his training career in 2010, Tampa Bay Downs’ Trainer of the Month Darien Rodriguez worked as an exercise rider for successful trainers Leigh Delacour, Miguel Feliciano and Mike Zwiesler. Riding five or six horses a morning is a routine the 40-year-old conditioner still follows, whether it’s a gallop or a timed workout. It’s […]

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‘Wants To Make Every Horse Better’: Jose Batista Jockey Of The Month At Tampa

Jose Batista tries to pattern his riding style and mental approach after Hall of Fame member John Velazquez. After winning three consecutive races on Jan. 25 at Tampa Bay Downs, Batista was eager to compete against his idol on the Feb. 8 Festival Preview Day card. That opportunity was snatched away on Feb. 2 when […]

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Stidham Appreciates ‘Kind And Safe’ Surfaces At Tampa Bay Downs

Although his is a relatively new face to most Tampa Bay Downs regulars, Michael Stidham first trained horses here in 1980 when his late father, George Stidham, sent him to Oldsmar with about 10 run-of-the-mill horses and specific instructions. “He told me to go learn something and not bring any back with me – either […]

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Bennett, Gallardo Repeat As Leading Trainer, Jockey At Tampa Bay Downs

Gerald Bennett plans to haul five horses to Delaware Park on Monday, with another 10 or so headed out on a van Thursday. By the time he’s finished, the veteran trainer should have between 30-35 horses ready for action for the May 30 opening. Transporting Thoroughbreds is second nature for Bennett, who captured his third consecutive Tampa Bay Downs […]

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FTBOA Silver Charm Stakes At Tampa Offers Winner A Forever Home

Colts and geldings that compete in the inaugural $100,000 Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association Silver Charm Florida Sire Stakes on Saturday, May 5 at Tampa Bay Downs will be racing for more than the winner’s purse. The race is a “Win & You’re In” opportunity for the winner, who will earn an invitation to spend his […]

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‘Like A Million Dollars’: Kaelins Celebrate Emotional Win With My Monkey

Derby Day came early for trainer Forrest Kaelin and his wife of 62 years, Betty. The Kaelins, who have long been among the most beloved horse people on the Tampa Bay Downs backside, won today’s fifth race with their 3-year-old filly My Monkey, who was bred by Betty Kaelin and the couple’s granddaughter, Brittany King. […]

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It’s Me Mom: Parents’ Legacy Lives On For Easy Blossom Owners

At the outset of the 2011-2012 Tampa Bay Downs meeting, past Oldsmar champion jockey Willie Martinez raved about the speed possessed by a 3-year-old filly named It’s Me Mom. Already a three-time stakes winner, It’s Me Mom lived up to Martinez’s hype by winning the 6-furlong Minaret Stakes in then-stakes-record time of 1:09.68. Then, after […]

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