10/14/2011 3:05PM

Remington assistant starter to be honored by chaplaincy


Jeremy Best, an assistant starter based at Remington Park in Oklahoma City, has been selected to receive the 2011 White Horse Award from the Race Track Chaplaincy of America during a Nov. 3 luncheon at Churchill Downs. Best earned the honor for his efforts to rescue 69-year-old jockey Roy Brooks from a serious starting gate situation at Remington in April. Brooks was pinned by a Quarter Horse in an incident that can be viewed at www.youtube.com/user/remingtonpark1. Best, 36, has been an assistant starter at Remington since 2001.

“It’s our job on the starting gate to protect the jockeys, then the horses, then ourselves,” Best said. “It’s what we’re supposed to do.”

Best is the son of Frank Best, who was a leading rider in the Northwest. Jeremy Best, in addition to his working as an assistant starter, is an exercise rider at Remington. Last year, he rescued an 83-year-old neighbor by hoisting up a card under which the neighbor was pinned.

The White Horse is an annual award for a backstretch worker who performs a heroic deed on behalf of a human or horse, according to a release issued by the chaplaincy. Bill Casner will be the guest speaker during the luncheon, which will also honor the late Pimlico executive Chick Lang. The chaplaincy will also be presenting a community service award to the Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association.