11/22/2010 2:06PM

Gomez picks up Hollywood Derby mount

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Benoit & Associates
Haimish Hy wins the El Cajon at Del Mar.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - The injured jockey Garrett Gomez returns to riding on a regular basis in Southern California on Sunday, and will ride Haimish Hy in the $250,000 Hollywood Derby that day.

The Grade 1 Hollywood Derby is run over 1 1/4 miles on turf and will be Haimish Hy’s first start at that level. Trained by Art Sherman, Haimish Hy has won 4 of 9 starts and $137,980.

Haimish Hy won the El Cajon Stakes on Del Mar’s Polytrack surface in a 31-1 upset in September and was fifth in the Grade 2 Oak Tree Derby over 1 1/8 miles on turf at Hollywood Park on Oct. 16, finishing 3 1/2 lengths behind race winner Fantastic Pick.

Gomez injured his shoulder Nov. 4 and has not ridden since winning the Breeders’ Cup Classic on Blame Nov. 6. He will ride at Churchill Downs from Wednesday through Saturday and then fly to California.

Gomez, 38, has not ridden regularly in Southern California since early April. In past years, Gomez has ridden at Santa Anita until early April and been based in Kentucky and New York from April until November.

At the Santa Anita winter-spring meeting earlier this year, Gomez finished in fourth-place in the jockey standings with 49 wins despite not riding the final two weeks of the meeting.

Gomez won the national earnings title from 2006-09, but is third this year with $14.9 million in earnings behind John Velazquez ($16.1 million) and Ramon Dominguez ($15.6 million).

Gomez has not ridden since the Breeders’ Cup. The jockey underwent physical therapy in the last week for his return on Wednesday. “He bit the bullet to ride the Breeders’ Cup days,” said his agent, Ron Anderson.

Crowded House to train in Dubai

Crowded House, who has run on three continents in the last year and was second in the Grade 1 Pacific Classic at Del Mar in August, is headed to Dubai for the winter, trainer Ben Cecil said.

Owner Paul Reddam has the $10 million Dubai World Cup at Meydan Racecourse on March 26 as a long-term goal. Cecil said that Crowded House will be sent to Dubai in January and will have two prep races at Meydan before the Dubai World Cup.

Earlier this year, when trained by Brian Meehan, Crowded House finished second in a prep race for the Dubai World Cup at Meydan and was ninth in the Dubai World Cup, finishing three lengths behind upset winner Gloria de Campeao.

“I thought he ran well in the race last year,” Cecil said. “He wasn’t beaten too far. It was a no-pace Dubai World Cup.”

Crowded House has won 2 of 16 starts and $989,452, racing in England, Dubai and North America. A 4-year-old colt, Crowded House won the Group 1 Racing Post Trophy in England in 2008 and joined Cecil’s stable in the summer. The Pacific Classic was Crowded House’s best result in four starts in North America this year.

Crowded House was last of seven in the Grade 1 Goodwood Stakes at Hollywood Park on Oct. 2 in his most recent start.

◗ Jack Owens has been appointed to the board of directors of the Thoroughbred Owners of California following the departure of David Bloom, the organization announced last week. This will be the second stint on the TOC board for Owens, who was a board member from 1994 to 2005. Owens, who lives in Modesto, Calif., is retired. He was the general counsel of the Gallo Winery and taught law at Georgetown and the University of California-Berkeley.