04/16/2016 5:09PM

Mrs. McDougal part of four-win day for Jose Ortiz

Adam Coglianese/NYRA
Jose Ortiz remains red-hot, winning the Plenty of Grace aboard Mrs McDougal.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Jose Ortiz continued his dominance of the Aqueduct spring meet on Saturday, winning four more races, including the $100,000 Plenty of Grace Stakes on Mrs McDougal, who received a perfect stalking trip.

Sitting third behind Harp N Halo and Means Well early on, Mrs McDougal swept three-wide turning for home, took the lead in mid-stretch, and easily held the late-running Strike Charmer at bay to win by a length. It was seven lengths back to Miss Atomic Bomb in third.

Saturday was the seventh time in 12 cards at this meet that Ortiz won at least three races on a card. On Friday, Ortiz also won four races. For the meet, Ortiz has won 33 races from 89 mounts and he’s 9 for 17 on the turf. His brother Irad, who rode at Oaklawn on Saturday, has 19 wins.

“It feels great; very happy,” Ortiz said “I’m riding good horses too. My agent [Jim Riccio Jr.] is doing a great job picking up horses and I guess I’m riding them well. They come ready.”

Trainer Chad Brown had Mrs McDougal ready in her first start since last Oct. 24, when she finished third in the Grade 3 Valley View Stakes at Keeneland.

Mrs McDougal had won the Grade 2 Lake George last summer at Saratoga stalking from fifth. Saturday, Mrs McDougal broke sharp and Ortiz knew that Harp N Halo would go to the lead. He was pleased to see Means Well, a 47-1 shot under Eric Cancel, go with her through a quarter-mile in 24.17 seconds and a half-mile in 48.07. Ortiz was content to sit third.

“By the three-eighths pole I angled myself out a little bit,” Ortiz said. “When my filly saw the clear she took off by herself. I waited and waited until we got to the three-sixteenths pole and when I make her switch leads and ask her to go she gave me a good run to the wire.”

Mrs McDougal, a daughter of Medaglia d’Oro owned by William and Suzanne Warren, covered the mile in 1:35.65 over firm turf and returned $4.30 as the favorite.

“Jose rode a very good race, sat right behind the speed. It was the ideal setup for her,” said Cherie DeVaux, assistant trainer to Brown. “She’s agreeable. She hasn’t been a one-dimensional kind of horse.”


Chuck Seddio More than 1 year ago
i know this kid is getting great mounts,his agent must be a genius,but at 23 years old he is showing a great sense of pace and patience,he reminds me so much of ramon dominguez,and his older brother is just as good,both great. kind of reminds me of that old man stevie cauthen"the kid" was when he came to ny to ride,albeit stevie did it immedietly and if i remember right he was only 17. but jose ortiz is the real deal and will be around here for a while. im hoping he gets a derby mount. what i love most about jose is he is not a specific type of rider, he can ride on the pace,stalk or come from the back and has a great judge of pace,and while he cant win every race he rarely puts his mount in a position to not win,he seems to be in the right place most of the time