04/17/2007 11:00PM

Jockey race looks hot at River Downs


After eight days and 63 races at this River Downs meet, 21 jockeys have won at least once. With a jockey colony that large, including five jockeys who have won the riding title here, it won't be easy for two of the leading riders, Perry Ouzts and Dean Sarvis, to achieve their goals.

Ouzts, who has won the title here a record 18 times, is closing in on a personal milestone, needing only 41 wins to reach 5,000. Ouzts, who has seven wins this meet, returned to racing just a few months ago after being off all last year with an arm injury that occurred in a spill at Turfway in January 2006.

Sarvis set a record for number of wins in a season here in 2005 with 167, and is trying to break his own mark. Sarvis has nine wins and is tied for leading jockey, but will have his work cut out for him because of the depth of the jockey colony. Sarvis missed most of the River Downs racing season in 2006 recovering from a shoulder injury he suffered in the first month of the meet.

Former River Downs riding champions here include Edgar Paucar, Rodney Prescott, and Jose Calo. Justin Vitek is tied for the lead with Sarvis.