07/16/2012 2:39PM

Saratoga: John Velazquez back working horses

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Barbara D. Livingston
John Velazquez breezes Archwarrior at Saratoga on Monday morning. Velazquez, who is recovering from a broken collarbone, said he felt no pain.

Jockey John Velazquez returned to the saddle Monday morning for the first time since fracturing his collarbone in a spill at Churchill Downs on June 16.

Over the Oklahoma training track at Saratoga, Velazquez breezed the 2-year-old Archwarrior four furlongs in 48.92 seconds in company with another 2-year-old. Both horses are trained by Todd Pletcher.

Velazquez said Monday afternoon he felt no pain, but was “a little tired.”

“You’re supposed to be. . . . I’ll probably be sore tomorrow,” he said.

While there is no definitive timetable for his return to race-riding, Velazquez said he hoped to be back to ride the weekend of July 28-29. In a perfect world, Velazquez would be riding Belmont Stakes winner Union Rags in the $1 million Haskell on July 29, but Union Rags is sidelined for the remainder of the year with a suspensory injury.

“It really depends how I feel the next few days,” Velazquez said about his return.

Velazquez, 40, said he hoped to get on at least one horse a day for two or three more mornings and then pick it up “little by little” from there.

Velazquez enters the Saratoga meet – which opens Friday – as the meet’s two-time defending leading rider. He also has 655 career victories at the Spa, trailing only Jerry Bailey, with 693, as the track’s all-time winningest rider.