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Jockey Javier Castellano put his name in the record books on Friday at Gulfstream Park, passing Ramon Dominguez to establish a new North American single-season record for purse earnings.
Castellano, 36, set the standard for riders after rallying on the far outside with I Ain’t Gonna Lie ($7.20) to win the third race by a nose over Currency Union for owner and trainer Herman Wilensky.
The victory, Castellano’s eighth of the meet, pushed his purse earnings to $25,655,988 on the year. He entered the day $8,849 shy of the $25,634,852 banked in 2012 by Dominguez, 37, who was forced to retire in June, five months after suffering serious injury in a spill at Aqueduct.
Leading the country in wins and purses earned, Castellano was a finalist for the Eclipse Award as top jockey behind Dominguez in 2011 and 2012, and is the leading contender to earn his first trophy in 2013. The ceremony will be held on Jan. 18, 2014 at Gulfstream.
In his first mount on card, Castellano was sixth with 8-5 favorite Beer Garden in the second race.
“I am very proud to break the record,” Castellano said. “One thing you work for all year round is this moment. I’m very proud to be at the level of Ramon Dominguez. He is such a classy guy.