Jockey Francisco Arrieta has been on a riding roll for a year now and on Tuesday makes a rare appearance at Fonner Park in Grand Island, Neb.
Arrieta’s mounts on the card include Captain John in the second race, a conditioned allowance for 3-year-olds and up at a mile, and Mallory’s Bandit in the eighth, an optional $10,000 claiming sprint that carries nonwinners of four races lifetime conditions.
Arrieta obtained the Canterbury Park title in 2019 in Minnesota and then made his way to New Mexico. He first captured the Zia Park title, then was leading the standings at Sunland Park when the coronavirus pandemic led to the shutdown of the meet in March.
Arrieta turned up in Nebraska on April 29, and from 16 mounts at the track has won three races, ended second five times, and third in four other races. It’s the first time he’s ridden at Fonner, with the scheduled start of the Canterbury now postponed. It was to have opened Saturday.
Arrieta will be teaming with Captain John for the first time.
The horse was a maiden winner April 20 at Fonner. Jerry Gourneau trains the son of Midshipman for Henry Witt Jr. Captain John will break from post 3.
Eastside Boy and Banana Pepper could start as the top two options. Eastside Boy comes off a pair of fourth-place finishes at this level at Fonner. Jake Olesiak has the mount for trainer Isai Gonzalez.
Arrieta’s mount in the eighth race, Mallory’s Bandit, comes off a fourth-place finish at this level April 27 at Fonner. He owns a competitive series of Beyer Figures heading into the six-furlong feature Tuesday. Arrieta has the mount from post 9 for owner and trainer Marissa Black.
The probable favorite is Lovethatcause, who has won his last two starts by a combined margin of 13 1/2 lengths. Lovethtacause captured a conditioned allowance by nine lengths April 14 at Fonner, then came back and won at this level April 27. Nathan Harr was aboard for both wins and has the mount from post 7 for trainer David Anderson.