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Albarado Riding High Into Big Weekend

Journeyman Robby Albarado has had a phenomenal year already in 2017. His business is up, his stakes rides are plentiful, he earned his 5,000th victory — becoming only the 33rd rider to reach such a milestone — and he recently was informed that he has been nominated for the National Museum of Racing’s 2017 Hall of Fame ballot. Selected by the Museum’s Hall of Fame Nominating committee, he is a finalist alongside jockeys Javier Castellano, Victor Espinoza, Craig Perret and the late Garrett Gomez. 

“It’s a great feeling and I’m up against a great class of nominees, but it’s a huge honor in itself just to be recognized,” Albarado said. “I went to my first Hall of Fame induction when Calvin Borel was inducted, who is a close personal friend, and all the past Hall of Famers line up in front of the stage. I saw those guys and thought ‘I will never be in the Hall of Fame’ because of the great quality of guys there like Pincay and Cordero and on and on. So, it’s just an overwhelming honor.”

At 43, Albarado has had a long and tremendous career. Beginning in 1990, the Louisiana native has been the regular rider of two Horse of the Years — Curlin and Mineshaft — and has won seven riding titles at Fair Grounds. Additionally, he has four Keeneland riding titles, one at Arlington International Racecourse, two at Oaklawn Park and one at Churchill Downs. 

In 2004, Albarado won the prestigious George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award, which added to a trophy case that includes three Breeders’ Cups, the 2007 Preakness Stakes with Curlin and 202 graded stakes throughout his storied career. 

Albarado could possibly have a huge weekend at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots. The veteran rider has live mounts in all four Grade II races, including G M B Racing’s Mo Tom in the $400,000 New Orleans Handicap, Wimborne Farm’s morning-line favorite Kasaqui (Arg) in the $300,000 Muniz Memorial, Wayne Sanders and Larry Hirsch’s promising Daria’s Angel in the $400,000 TwinSpires.com Fair Grounds Oaks and William S. Farish and Lora Jean Kilroy’s Guest Suite in the $1,000,000 Louisiana Derby. 

“I am going to have a good day tomorrow,” Albarado concluded. “I feel really good about it. I’m confident in all my mounts and I look forward to it.”