'One Day I Will Never Forget': Apprentice Rene Diaz Doubles At Keeneland - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report
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‘One Day I Will Never Forget’: Apprentice Rene Diaz Doubles At Keeneland

Rene Diaz guides Pliantlea to his first win on Thursday at Keeneland

Apprentice jockey Rene Diaz, who began riding in April 2021 at Gulfstream Park, had his biggest day yet at Keeneland on Thursday.

“It is one day I will never forget,” said the 22-year-old native of Venezuela who grew up in Miami about the afternoon when he rode two winners and finished second on an 85-1 longshot.

Both winners – Pliantlea, who paid $6.80 in the fifth race and Pistol, who paid $12.60 in the ninth race – are owned by Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and trained by Michael McCarthy. Diaz never had ridden for McCarthy before, nor had he ridden for Neil Pessin, who conditions the longshot runner-up in the seventh race, Fine Cotton.

How does one celebrate after such a day?

“Had a salad, went to the gym and went to sleep early because I have horses to work this morning,” Diaz said between sets Friday morning at Keeneland.

He has two mounts here Saturday and one Sunday.

Diaz rode this winter at Fair Grounds, where his main supporter was trainer Tom Amoss. His agent is Jose Santos Jr., who says Diaz has mounts booked for Derby Week at Churchill Downs.

“For now I'd like to stay in Kentucky and Indiana (at Horseshoe Indianapolis),” said Diaz, who receives a 7-pound apprentice weight allowance. “I'll go wherever my agent tells me.”

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