06/21/2011 12:01AM

Making noise in New York: Ryan Curatolo


Jockey Ryan Curatolo was standing tall in the saddle Saturday at Belmont after his first stakes victory.  The next day, he was whisked to the hospital for x-rays after falling from his mount before the first race.  

Yet it's obvious that, the way this 19-year-old apprentice rides, many more stakes-winning days lie ahead.

The young Frenchman, who speaks English well, sports a charmingly polite style and an engaging smile. Ryan often removes his helmet when making introductions, his Facebook page mentions he speaks English and Italian (in addition to his native French), and his smile?  Well, it's obvious he's not just riding winners.  He's riding on Cloud 9.

And why not?  After arriving stateside in October - and riding this winter in Florida - Ryan's already making noise at Belmont Park.  Lots of noise.  From his remarkable four-bagger on May 21 (one mount paid $108.50...cha-ching!) through his first stakes win - aboard Street Game in the G3 Hill Prince (without his usual 5-pound weight allowance) - he's proving he can really ride. Through Sunday, he stands fifth in the NYRA jockey standings.  

Ryan Curatolo:

Birthdate: April 29, 1992 

Birth place:  Marseille, France

Height: 5' 5"

Favorite food:  Lasagna

Favorite movie:  A Bronx Tale, with Robert DeNiro

Favorite car:  Porsche

Favorite vacation spot: Bora Bora

Favorite jockey:  Frankie Dettori

Favorite friend in the New York jockey room:  Cornelio Velasquez

Day-off routine: Enjoys going to the movies, having a good meal, studying race replays to help with upcoming races

Tuesday a.m. routine: Visits countryman Patrick Biancone to breeze horses and learn more about riding 

Favorite music: Classical in the morning for relaxation, rap in the afternoon, and, in his words, "at night I put Mama Mia for sleep, LOLLLLLLLLL..."

Above:  Ryan Curatolo and Rajiv Maragh, Belmont Park, June 2011.

Above:  At Gulfstream Park, Florida, in February 2011.

Above and below:  Flying Zee Stables' Street Game, with Ryan Curatolo up, wins the G3 Hill Prince on  June 18, 2011.  It was Curatolo's first stakes victory. Congratulations!

Street Game's victory in the Hill Prince at Belmont Park: YouTube - Street Game - 2011 Hill Prince (G3)

Daily Racing Form article about Ryan Curatolo, May 26, 2011: Belmont Park: Curatolo makes quick impact as apprentice rider | Daily Racing Form