08/18/2014 2:44PM

Jockey Raul Valenzuela suspended for allegedly possessing buzzer


Quarter Horse jockey Raul Valenzuela was summarily suspended by the board of stewards at Ruidoso Downs on Saturday for alleged possession of an electrical device, according to Vince Mares, executive director of the New Mexico State Racing Commission.

Mares said Monday that Valenzuela could be subject to an additional hearing in coming days, pending an ongoing investigation. Valenzuela could face a lengthy suspension for the alleged possession. Mares said the investigation would determine whether Valenzuela would be allowed to keep his jockey’s license.

Valenzuela, who rides most of the year at Los Alamitos, had one win in five mounts at Ruidoso Downs from Thursday through Saturday, riding time trials for the All American Futurity on Thursday and Friday and one trial for the All American Derby on Saturday. He finished fourth on One Slick Cartel in an All American Derby trial.

Valenzuela, who stands 5 feet 11 inches, was scheduled to ride Scatmandu in the Bank of America California Challenge at Los Alamitos on Sunday evening, but was replaced by Guillermo Suarez.

Valenzuela, 20, began his career riding in Arizona and rode his first winner at Rillito Park in 2010. He moved to Los Alamitos in early 2013 and won his first race there in June 2013. Last winter, Valenzuela became the regular rider of the filly Nellie Delaney, riding her to wins in the Southern California Derby last December and the Los Alamitos Winter Championship earlier this year.