04/06/2012 5:26PM

Aqueduct: Dominguez back race-riding, says he feels great

Benoit & Associates
Jockey Ramon Dominguez was honored with the George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award, given to riders whose careers and personal character are held in esteem by fellow jockeys.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Ramon Dominguez said he felt “better than expected” after returning to the saddle Friday at Aqueduct for the first time since suffering a separated collarbone in a spill here on March 18.

Dominguez rode two horses, finishing fourth aboard Cooper River in the second and second on Rebellious Chic in the seventh.

In the second, Dominguez utilized his left-handed whip three times and then switched and went right-handed four times.

“I’m feeling great really, better than expected as far as fitness goes because I haven’t been on too many horses in the morning,” Dominguez said. “My arm felt absolutely perfect, excellent; very, very good.”

Dominguez said he took two Advil before riding Friday.

“It’s the only medication I have taken since the accident – just as a preventive thing because I’m assuming I’ll be a little sore afterward,” he said.

Dominguez, the Eclipse Award winning rider the last two years, was injured in a spill over the inner track on March 18. He is taking his comeback slowly, riding two horses Friday, and two on Saturday – including Alpha in the $1 million Wood Memorial. He plans to ride Havre de Grace next Friday in the Apple Blossom and on April 14 he wil ride Hansen in the Blue Grass at Keeneland.

[WOOD MEMORIAL: News updates, contender replays, watch the race live]

Dominguez is hoping to return on a regular basis beginning April 18.