‘Every Win Here Is Special’: Manny Franco Celebrates Five Wins Friday At Aqueduct – Horse Racing News


Manny Franco extended his lead atop the jockey standings by notching five wins from seven mounts on Friday’s eight-race card at Aqueduct Racetrack.

Franco, who equaled a NYRA record by winning with 6-of-7 mounts on January 6 here, leads all riders at the Aqueduct winter meet with 56 wins.

“It means a lot to me. Every win here is special. It’s hard to get a win, especially here in New York,” Franco said. “I’m just happy to be here in New York and riding the horses I’ve been riding. My agent [John Panagot] has been doing a great job. This is home to me. I really appreciate the support of all the trainers and thank them for their support all year long.”

Franco, a 28-year-old native of Carolina, Puerto Rico, swept the first four races on Friday’s card, taking the opener – a nine-furlong maiden for 3-year-olds and up – with the Chad Brown-trained Systemic Change [No. 3, $2.80*] in a tight finish with stablemate Kaon. Franco followed by winning Race 2 with the Rob Atras-conditioned Central Pride [No. 2, $6.20] in a 6 1/2-furlong state-bred maiden claiming sprint for 3-year-olds and up; and concluded the early Pick 3 by guiding Wild Banker [No. 7, $5.40*] to victory for trainer Rudy Rodriguez in a nine-furlong claimer for older horses.

Franco continued his streak in Race 4 by guiding 3-5 favorite Improper [No. 1, $3.40*] to victory for trainer John Terranova in a six-furlong maiden claimer for 3-year-olds and up. After finishing second in Race 5 aboard Built to Last, Franco returned to winning ways in Race 6 by combining once more with Atras to capture a six-furlong claiming sprint for older fillies and mares with Dame Cinco [No. 5, $4.10*], prevailing in a photo finish over Alpine Queen.

Among Franco’s 56 winners at the current meet are stakes scores in the Grade 3 Withers [Hit Show], Queens County [Law Professor], Haynesfield [Dr Ardito] and Gander [Neural Network]. He will look to add to those totals this weekend when he rides Rossa Veloce in Saturday’s $100,000 Correction and Know It All Audrey in the $100,000 Biogio’s Rose on Sunday.

Live racing resumes Saturday at the Big A with a 10-race card, with the six-furlong Correction slated for Race 9. First post is 12:50 p.m. Eastern.

America’s Day at the Races will present live coverage and analysis of the Aqueduct winter meet on the networks of FOX Sports. For the broadcast schedule and channel finder, visit https://www.nyra.com/aqueduct/racing/tv-schedule.

NYRA Bets is the best way to bet every race of the Aqueduct Racetrack winter meet. Available to horse players nationwide, the NYRA Bets app is available for download today on iOS and Android at www.NYRABets.com.