‘These Are Agonizing Decisions’: Sadler Explains Switch From Rispoli To Rosario On Rock Your World

In a development that had been rumored earlier in the week, Steve Andersen of Daily Racing Form reported early Saturday evening that John Sadler had confirmed Joel Rosario would replace Umberto Rispoli aboard Grade 1 Runhappy Santa Anita Derby winner Rock Your World in the G1 Kentucky Derby on May 1.

In an interview on “Thoroughbred Los Angeles” radio Sunday morning, Sadler acknowledged the difficult decision to make a rider change was his.

“Let’s be very clear here, I was rooting for (Bob Baffert’s) Concert Tour to win the Arkansas Derby (G1 on April 10) and (then) this is all a non-conversation,” said Sadler.  “We decided to wait until after the Concert Tour race to see what was gonna happen and nobody could’ve predicted that (a disappointing third-place finish), really.  I mean, he was one to five or whatever and then he didn’t run on.

“So, when Joel came available. … You know, these are agonizing decisions and not easy. I want to be very clear, I think the world of Rispoli and I think the world of his riding.  He’s a terrific rider on our circuit and he’s been a great addition to California and will continue to be.  But, I had to make a call and this is the call I made. … History will tell whether I’m right or wrong.  Things could go bad, you know, overnight in this game, but this is the decision we made for this race, so you know, we have to live with it and go forward.

“We think with (Joel’s) experience over the track. … And just my relationship with him and these owners (Hronis Racing, LLC and Talla Racing, LLC) … this gives us our strongest position.  So, this is what we’re going to do. … I would love for somebody to look this up.  Am I the trainer that Joel Rosario has won the most races for in his career?  I think so. … We were winning titles together at Del Mar and if you say, ‘Okay, Rosario with Chad Brown or Rosario with Todd Pletcher.  Which trainer has the most wins with this jock?’  I think it’s me.

“I’ll be shocked if it isn’t. … One of the great stats in racing history is Russell Baze and Jerry Hollendorfer. It’s like, there’s nobody even close.  You know, the runs they had together. … So, there’s definitely some good chemistry there and we just gotta hope things go our way in Kentucky.”

Sadler said that Rock Your World would leave for Louisville next Sunday.  By Candy Ride and bred in Kentucky by Hall of Fame trainer Ron McAnally and his wife Debbie, Rock Your World won his first start, a six-furlong maiden special weight at six furlongs on turf at Santa Anita on Jan. 1 under Rosario.  Rispoli took over for a one mile turf win in the Pasadena Stakes Feb. 27 and orchestrated a brilliant gate to wire triumph in the Runhappy Santa Anita Derby on April 3, the colt’s first start on dirt.

The post ‘These Are Agonizing Decisions’: Sadler Explains Switch From Rispoli To Rosario On Rock Your World appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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