Aqueduct Fall Meet Ends with Trainers Tied

Meet concluded Dec. 2 when fog forced the cancellation of the day’s card.

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Courtesy BloodHorse.com

Trainers Rudy Rodriguez and Todd Pletcher, with 12 wins apiece, and jockey Manny Franco, with 25 victories, were the leaders in their respective categories for Aqueduct Racetrack‘s 22-day fall meet that concluded when the Dec. 2 card was canceled due to heavy fog.

Chester and Mary Broman and Godolphin tied for the most wins by an ownership group, with each entity registering six wins in a meet that started Nov. 2.

Rodriguez saddled 12 winners in 65 starts with earnings of $635,976. He won his eighth meet at Aqueduct, encompassing four fall meets, three inner-track meet crowns, and the winter meet title he earned earlier this year.

Pletcher had 12 winners from 45 starts with earnings of $749,064. Among his highlights during the meet was Bal Harbour‘s score in the Nov. 23 Gio Ponti, Village King‘s win in the Nov. 17 Red Smith, Empire of War‘s win in the Nov. 4 Awad, and South of France and La Fuerza‘s victories Nov. 25 in the Tepin and Notebook stakes, respectively.

Franco earned his second riding title on the New York Racing Association circuit, adding to his 2018 Aqueduct winter meet. Franco, who will turn 24  Dec. 19, registered 25 wins, 14 second-place finishes, and 24 third-place efforts from 120 mounts. Among his highlights was his victory aboard Vekoma in the Nov. 4 Nashua (G3), and aboard Positive Spirit in the Dec. 1 Demoiselle (G2) on Cigar Mile Day.

Chester and Mary Broman registered six wins in 13 starts for a 46.15% win rate. Their stakes win during the meet came with Highway Starcapturing the Nov. 11 New York Stallion Series Staten Island.

Godolphin tallied six wins, a pair of runner-up efforts, and two third-place finishes in 16 starts to lead all ownership groups with earnings of $376,145. The meet highlight’s include Exulting winning the Nov. 10 Artie Schiller.

Aqueduct’s winter and spring meets will feature a total of 52 stakes worth more than $7.3 million in purses, highlighted by the Big A’s traditional spring showcase, the $750,000 Wood Memorial (G2) April 6.

The 2019 winter meet will be buoyed by the addition of one new stakes event, the $100,000 Bernardini Stakes at 1 5/16 miles on the main track, slated for March 2.

Purse increases will be recognized in the $250,000 Busher Invitational for sophomore fillies, up $50,000 from a year ago, while the New York Stallion Series Times Square Division and Park Avenue Division will each double to $200,000, to close out stakes racing April 20 for the spring meet at the Big A.

New York’s Road to the Kentucky Derby will continue into the Aqueduct winter meet, which begins Dec. 7, with the $150,000 Jerome Stakes (G3) contested at one mile on New Year’s Day, followed Feb. 2 by the $250,000 Withers (G3) at 1 1/8 miles. Each are worth 10-4-2-1 points to the top four finishers towards a spot in the May 4 Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) at Churchill Downs.

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