The Racing Journal Logo

It’s Kubinova Time at Emerald Downs!


April 19, 2012     E-mail this page to a friend!

Eliska Kubinova tops the early jockey standings at Emerald Downs
(photo by courtesy of Emerald Downs)
With three days in the books, riding apprentice Eliska Kubinova has already powered to first place in the jockey standings with five victories from 21 mounts, including three straight wins on Sunday, April 15.

Coming off a 60-win season at Portland Meadows, the striking 23-year-old Kubinova knew expectations would be high entering Emerald Downs’ 17th season. Those expectations didn’t just come from trainers, owners and fans, however, as Kubinova has put plenty of pressure on herself to achieve success. And while the native of the Czech Republic has every right to celebrate her early success, she’d much rather find ways to get better. After all, her winning rides Sunday aboard, in order, Renaissance Queen, Pokomoko and Golden N Sweet are turf history. In horse racing, Kubinova knows, people mainly want to know what you can do today, not what you did yesterday or last week.

“I wouldn’t give myself a high grade (for the weekend’s rides), because I still made a lot of mistakes,” Kubinova said. “I still have more work to do.

“(And) most of the horses that I rode, I’d been working with since February,” she added. “And most of them had been training good, too.”

Nevertheless, Kubinova is off and running at Emerald Downs. She takes a two-win lead over both Leonel Camacho-Flores and Jennifer Whitaker into Week 2 of the 24-week meeting. And she was tabbed as the meet’s inaugural Jockey of the Week, with the ceremony to take place Saturday after the third race.

For Kubinova, it’s so far, so good, but there's 78 more racing days at the meeting. As for grades, however, veteran race-goers gave Kubinova an A-plus for her early efforts. An apprentice on paper and a veteran on horseback, Kubinova not only notched a natural riding-triple on Sunday, but all five of her wins came with five different trainers.

Maria Rossak to join EmD jockey colony


The Emerald Downs jockey colony will add another European female rider when Maria Magdalena Rossak—a native of Slovakia—gets her license Friday to ride at the 2012 meeting. Rossak said she hopes to begin riding races next week.

Rossak made headlines as a 16-year-old in 2010 when she became only the second woman jockey to win the Fortuna Czech Derby in Prague, guiding her parents’ 3-year-old colt Talgado from last place to win the illustrious event.

Rossak graduated from the Laffit Pincay. Jr., Jockey School at Presidente Remon Racetrack in 2009.