Thoroughbred Racing Fan Association, Inc.
WHY WILL JOCKEY UMBERTO RISPOLI NOT BE RIDING MAX PLAYER IN THE 2021 SAUDI CUP?
The $20 million Saudi Cup is schedule to run tomorrow, February 20, 2021. It is currently the race with the highest purse run in the world. Fifteen horse were originally entered to run. However, Alzahzaah, #1, scratched leaving fourteen. The fate of two others is currently in question because their jockeys could not make it to Saudi Arabia. Johnny Velazquez scheduled to ride Tacitus for trainer Bill Mott had travel connection problems that derailed is trip. Max Player trained by Steve Asmussen lost his rider Umberto Rispoli due a COVID testing issue. Reports have it that Saudi Arabi required all connections to have COVID negative tests 48 hours before arriving. Rispoliís test was negative 72 hours before arriving and was refused admission to the country. As of this writing the fate of these two horses has not been made public.