LAUREL: ALEXANDER CRISPIN WINS FOUR
Five-pound apprentice jockey Alexander Crispin continued his sizzling start to the new year by riding four winners on Sunday’s nine-race program at Laurel Park.
Crispin, 22, began his big day with back-to-back victories aboard Cinconola ($18.20) in Race 2 and favored Xmasinthecity ($3.40) in Race 3, and followed up with wins on McElmore Avenue ($3) in Race 6 and Zabracadabra ($7) in Race 8.
- Joy and tears as Caravel sets sailPennsylvania-bred Caravel won the G3 Caress at Saratoga. in a bittersweet last start for breeder-owner-trainer Lizzie Merryman.
A native of Puerto Rico, Cripsin has eight wins over the first three days of Laurel’s 2021 winter meet that began New Year’s Day, including a riding triple Saturday.
“I feel pretty good on how things are going. All the hard work is paying off,” Crispin said. “I really appreciate all the trainers and owners giving me the opportunity. So far so good. Everything’s been good. I appreciate everything that’s going on today and the past few days.”
Expected to be up for voting as North America’s leading apprentice jockey when the Eclipse Award finalists are announced Jan. 16, Crispin graduated from Puerto Rico’s famed Escuela Vocacional Hipica jockey school in December 2019 and made his pro debut last Jan. 1 at Hipodromo Camarero.
From August 2020: Alexander Crispin following a dream, making a mark
After coming to the U.S. late last winter, Cripsin was fifth in his mainland debut aboard Time Marches On March 7, 2020 at Turfway Park. He continued to ride in the Midwest, picking up his first win March 12, 2020 on Thorpe d’Oro at Turfway, until moving his tack to Delaware Park for the summer.
Crispin finished the Delaware meet as its leading apprentice rider, ranking second overall with 58 wins and fourth with more than $1.3 million in purse earnings. He arrived in Maryland in late October, two weeks into Laurel Park’s fall meet, and wound up ranking first among bug boys and third overall with 29 wins, banking $725,920 in purses earned.
“It started out a little bit tough but I maintained a positive mind and kept working hard,” Cripsin said. “I came every day to work and kept persevering and believing in myself.”
Crispin’s wins have come for trainers Gary Capuano, Mary Eppler, Mike Trombetta, Anthony Pecoraro, Kieron Magee, Charlie Frock and Maryland’s four-time defending champion Claudio Gonzalez. In addition to his wins, he has one second and six thirds in 22 mounts, finishing in the top three at 68 percent clip.
According to Equibase statistics, Crispin finished 2020 with 103 wins and $2,194,030 in purse earnings from 539 mounts. Maryland-based riders have won 11 of 46 Eclipse Awards as leading apprentice, most recently Weston Hamilton in 2018.
“Everyone helps me out. They come to me and tell me if I need something or maybe get better at doing a certain thing I was doing,” Crispin said. “Everybody likes seeing me doing good. They give me good advice. They are always supporting me so appreciate all they do for me. It’s been big for my year. It means a lot to me.”