LARC NEWS Posted: 3/11/2021 6:44:07 PM


         Jesus Rios Ayala, who has been the leading Quarter Horse rider here each of the past four years, is hoping to return to riding in time of the trials to the Robert Adair Kindergarten Futurity on April 25. Rios Ayala has not ridden since injuring his right foot and knee when his mount became fractious in the starting gate before a trial to the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity on November 22.                                      Rios Ayala required foot surgery and injured both the posterior cruciate ligament and anterior cruciate ligament of his right knee.                        

          “I am hoping to be back for the Kindergarten trials,” he said. “It’ll depend on how I’m healing. I will be back soon.”                        

          Rios Ayala won the 2020 Quarter Horse riding title after piloting 78 winners. He has also finished fourth or better nationally in Quarter Horse wins each of the past four years. 


          Kellie McDaid is ending her riding comeback. McDaid first retired from riding after finishing as the leading Thoroughbred rider at Los Alamitos in 2018. She made eight starts in 2019, did not ride at all in 2020 before returning with a victorious ride aboard Shake N Fries on January 9. She will continue to work as an exercise rider at Los Alamitos.                                                  

          “I love the horses and you do develop some great relationships with them and the same for everyone at Los Alamitos,” McDaid said. “I love my gallop job. I love the horses…but I’m at a point in my life where I need a new challenge.                           

         “When your mind, body and soul tell you to hang up your jock boots to enjoy life...then I’m going to do it. Horse racing is in my blood. I’ve been riding since I was a toddler. I’m now 31, I achieved a lot in racing throughout my career, thanks to my work ethic and dedication to the sport.”                                                 

       Having to deal with making riding weight played a part in McDaid’s decision.  “I want to go out and eat whatever I want, have my body feel more womanly,” she said. “I don’t want to weigh myself daily anymore. My mind has matured to a strong point to know what vibes and what doesn’t with me. Thank you to all the great fans. I simply just want to do what makes me happy. I’ve got a lot of options in the pipeline I’m looking into. I’ll never close the door on working with horses but I’m a point in my life where I need a new challenge.”                      

        McDaid won seven races from 40 starts this year.


          Henry Reynoso Lopez has been the hottest rider at Los Alamitos over the past two racing weekends, winning six of his 16 mounts for a win ratio of 37.5%. The 19-year-old Reynoso Lopez is a riding double-threat, as he is enjoying success aboard both Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds here.


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