From the Los Alamitos Stewards Minutes, January 1:

“Jockey Santiago Mendez was in to review his ride in the eighth race from the previous Sunday evening, when he over-cropped his horse, #5 “Ivy’s Storm,” approximately a dozen times without a pause. Mr. Mendez offered no excuse other than he blanked out and kept hitting the horse and forgetting the rule as he was in the heat of battle for the win. The following ruling was issued.

JOCKEY SANTIAGO MENDEZ IS FINED $100 FOR VIOLATION OF CALIFORNIA HORSE RACING BOARD RULE #1688(b)(6) (USE OF RIDING CROP-MORE THAN THREE TIMES IN SUCCESSION WITHOUT GIVING THE HORSE A CHANCE TO RESPOND-FIRST OFFENSE WITHIN THE PREVIOUS 60 DAY PERIOD).”

“Over-cropped his horse approximately a dozen times without a pause” – “no excuse other than he blanked out” – $100 fine.

Speechless.

The “battle” he was in, by the way, was for a share of $20,000; 2-year-old Ivys Storm finished 2nd, earning $4,500 for her “connections,” including, of course, Mr. Mendez.

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