For the second time this summer, a jockey at Indiana Grand has been issued a 30-day suspension by stewards for dangerous riding.
Orlando Mojica, involved in a one-horse spill in the third race at Indiana Grand July 22, was determined to have twice "carelessly and recklessly steered his mount, Miss Mercken, into unacceptably tight quarters," stewards wrote in a ruling issued July 23. This action "needlessly" endangered his mount, himself, and other race participants, it stated.
The suspension follows one issued to jockey Gabriel Saez, who was penalized for "extreme carelessness" in a spill-marred race at the Indiana track June 17.
Miss Mercken, owned by Maggi Moss and trained by Tom Amoss, clipped the heels of another rival when quickly advancing from the back of the pack at the head of the stretch in a $20,000 claiming race. She fell and suffered fatal injuries, according to the ruling.
Mojica, unseated in the accident, returned to ride two other races on the card. He rode through July 28 at Indiana Grand and began serving his suspension July 29. It will continue until Aug. 27.
His request for a stay of his suspension was denied Tuesday, according to Noah Jackson, the general counsel for the Indiana Horse Racing Commission.
Mojica is a veteran rider with 2,474 victories in North America. He has won 43 races from 375 rides in 2020 and is 2-for-84 at the Indiana Grand meet.