by Terry Finisterre
Saint Lucian jockey Eric ‘Rico’ Daniel will be part of three races on Friday at what has been billed the richest horse racing event in the Caribbean. The inaugural event of the Royal Saint Lucia Turf Club gets underway on Saint Lucia’s National Day in Vieux Fort.
Daniel, who is himself from Vieux Fort, has over a dozen wins in Barbados, where he moved in 2018 to pursue his dream of becoming a professional jockey. His little brother hopes to emulate him as well, but for now, it is Rico in the spotlight.
He will be involved in Race 1, the US$20,000 Helen of the West Indies Stakes, riding Pitons Punch 1400m in light blue and pink. The unraced horse, bred in Florida by Stonehedge, LLC, is owned by Madaket Stables LLC, and trained by Robert Peirce.
He will then turn his attention to the 1400m National Day Sprint, with a US$20,000 purse. Katie’s Jewel will be his mount, and he will be wearing white and aqua. The Iowa-bred filly, owned by OB Precast and Concrete, is trained by Robbie Hewetson.
In the US$150,000 Pitons Cup, Daniel will be astride Donna’s True Bling. Owned by Dan Schader and trained by Peirce, the Texas-bred animal has racked up over $43,000 in career earnings. Daniel will wear orchid and gold in the 1800m race.