10/09/2013 1:12PM

Belmont: Rosario eager to resume riding Friday

Tom Keyser
Joel Rosario, sidelined since Aug. 23 with a broken foot, has three mounts on Friday's card at Belmont.

ELMONT, N.Y. – There is never a good time for a jockey to get injured, but the timing of Joel Rosario’s broken foot could not have been worse.

On Aug. 23, Rosario was injured when his mount, Casual Elegance, stumbled past the finish line, unseating him, resulting in a broken bone in his foot. The following day, Rosario was scheduled to ride Kentucky Derby winner Orb in the $1 million Travers at Saratoga. The day after that, he was named to ride Game On Dude, the leading older horse in the country, in the $1 million Pacific Classic at Del Mar.

“It happens sometimes,” Rosario said Wednesday morning at Belmont Park. “Too bad it happened to me at that time but what are you going to do? When something is not for you, it’s not for you.”

Rosario returns to the saddle for the first time since Aug 23 on Friday, when he is scheduled ride three mounts at Belmont Park. Rosario began getting on horses on Oct. 5 and galloped one for trainer Todd Pletcher on Wednesday over the Belmont training track.

“I’m excited to come back,” Rosario said. “We’re going to ride on Friday and see how we feel, take it from there. Can’t wait to come back; I missed working. I don’t like to stay home. I like to work.”

At the time of his injury, Rosario was the leading rider in North America in both wins and purse money. He has now slipped to third in both categories though his 25 graded stakes victories still place him second behind John Velazquez (37). Rosario’s statistics do not include his victory in the Dubai World Cup on Animal Kingdom or his win on No Nay Never in the Group 2 Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot.

By returning now, Rosario is in line to ride at the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita on Nov. 1-2. While nothing is confirmed, Rosario’s agent, Ron Andersen, said he is in the process of lining up several mounts for those races.