03/25/2012 5:28PM

Dominguez receives George Woolf Award

Benoit & Associates
Injured jockey Ramon Dominguez hopes to resume riding in time for the April 7 Wood Memorial in New York.

ARCADIA, Calif. - Ramon Dominguez was honored at Santa Anita on Sunday as the latest recipient of the George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award, a recognition that comes at a time when the champion rider is sidelined with a separated collarbone.

Dominguez, 35, said after the ceremony that he remains hopeful for a return to riding by April 7, the day of the Wood Memorial Stakes for 3-year-olds at Aqueduct. Dominguez suffered the injury at Aqueduct on March 18.

“I want to be back by Wood Day,” he said. “That will be three weeks from the time of the accident.”

Dominguez is the regular rider of such top 3-year-olds as Alpha, a candidate for the Wood; and Hansen, the champion 2-year-old colt of 2011 and a candidate for the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland on April 14.

Dominguez said he has rested his collarbone in the last week, and has not undergone any physical therapy. He said he is scheduled to see a doctor early on the week of April 2, hoping to hear positive news that will allow him to return to riding by the following weekend.

“The doctor said for one week to keep it settled,” he said. “Maybe 10 days from now, I can get on horses.”

 The winner of the Eclipse Award as the nation’s outstanding rider in 2010 and 2011, Dominguez received the Woolf Award while in the company of several past winners, including retired Hall of Famers Laffit Pincay Jr, and Eddie Delahoussaye.

The award recognizes jockeys for success on the track, and personal character away from the sport, and is named in honor of the late jockey who died as a result of injuries suffered in a spill here in 1946.

“It’s an honor to be here with friends who have done so much for the sport,” he said, turning toward a group of past winners. “It doesn’t only represent your accomplishments on the track, but your personal character. That makes it very special.”