11/08/2017 3:20PM

Jam at top of rider standings


Retama Park near San Antonio had a three-way tie atop its rider standings heading into Friday.

Ted Gondron, who won last year’s title in a tie, has won 22 races this meet, as has Ernesto Valdez-Jiminez and Ivan Arellano.

Perennial leading trainer Danny Pish leads the standings with 25 wins. Ronnie Cravens III is second with 17.

The leading owner is End Zone Athletics, with 12 wins compared to six from runner-up Adriel Gonzalez.

Retama on Friday night is offering free admission and a box seat with buffet for veterans and active-duty military. Those eligible must show a military ID.

Gelner to try Oaklawn

Trainer Scott Gelner, who has won 2-year-old stakes with three different horses this year, said he plans to have a division at the Oaklawn meet, which opens in January. It will be the first time Gelner has had horses stabled at the Hot Springs, Ark., track. He won his first race as a trainer in 2002.

Gelner said clients such as Norman Stables have stepped up and bought higher-quality young horses, among them Secret Passion, winner of the Prairie Meadows Gold Lassie in July, and Shes Our Fastest, winner of the Evangeline Downs Princess in September. Another runner for Norman Stables and Gelner is the colt Land Battle, who has placed in three stakes. Gelner also trains the 2-year-old Emily’s Lollipop, who won the Louisiana Cup Juvenile Fillies at Louisiana Downs. She is working at Delta.

Oaklawn opens its stable area to horses Monday. Training beings Nov. 20. Gelner is one of several new trainers expected for 2018.

◗ F J Uncle Vic, a multiple stakes winner who in his last start ran fifth in a rare turf appearance in the Texas Hall of Fame Stakes at Retama Park, is being freshened and will return to action at the Sam Houston meet, which opens in January, said his trainer, Terry Eoff.