Apprentice Kreidel wins aboard 'Gale,' a 19-1 long shot

March 25, 1994|By Ross Peddicord | Ross Peddicord,Sun Staff Writer

John Faltynski, the agent for apprentice Kaymarie Kreidel, calls her "Special Kay."

For good reason.

The 22-year-old jockey has shown amazing courage in her brief riding career, refusing to give up after breaking her back three times and suffering a near-fatal spill last summer at Delaware Park. Now as her skills improve and her career gains visibility, she is starting to attract attention on the Maryland circuit.

Kreidel is about the same height as Julie Krone, muscular as a gymnast and is one of the few people, said trainer Donald Souder, "who always seems happy. So many people around the track are sour. But Kay has this great attitude."

Yesterday Kreidel, who grew up in Port Deposit and graduated from Perryville High School, guided Hill Gale, the longest shot on the board at 19-1 odds, to a six-length victory in the sixth race at Laurel Race Course.

It was Kreidel's sixth win in Maryland and 28th overall. Tomorrow, she picks up the mount on Reputed Testamony, the 1992 Maryland Million winner who is trying to regain his old form after he went down in a two-horse spill in last year's Maryland Million.

Kreidel rode her first winner in April 1992 and admits she had a spotty record until she came back rejuvenated after taking a particularly hard fall last June.

She had broken her back twice in training accidents before she fractured it a third time in a more dramatic fashion at Delaware.

"About an eighth of a mile coming out of the gate, my horse clipped heels and went down on me," she said. In addition to breaking her back a third time, Kreidel said she had five broken ribs, a broken tailbone, a bruised lung, ripped a hole in her shin, had two dead spots in her brain and lost her peripheral vision "which I got totally back," she said.

Less than three months later, she was back riding and moved to Maryland permanently in the fall. She rode her fifth winner on Oct. 29 and has the "bug" (apprentice weight allowance) until Oct. 29, 1994.

"It is just a big thrill every time I get on a horse and go out there," she said. "My adrenalin starts pumping. Sure the risks are greater than if you have a desk job. But then again, the rewards don't compare."

Meets may shift dates

In order to accommodate an Oct. 1 running of the Maryland Million at Laurel, track management is going to request that the Pimlico summer meet open a couple of weeks earlier than scheduled in order for the fall Laurel meet to start earlier.

Under the revised schedule, the Pimlico summer meet will start July 26 instead of Aug. 9 and the Laurel fall meet will begin Sept. 27 instead of Oct. 4.

Miscellaneous

Joe Rocco, who has been sidelined about five months after bruising his liver in a spill last fall, returns to action at Laurel tomorrow. He rides in the second and fifth races for trainers Jim Casey and Donald Barr, respectively. Rocco is returning with a new agent, former jockey Adam Campola. . . . El Bakan, third in the Preakness last year, returns to action at a Maryland track in today's $25,000 feature. The horse is nominated to the May 14 Pimlico Special.

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