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Mariano Rivera Visits Saratoga Race Course

john velazquez
New York Yankees pitcher Mariano Rivera, a 12-time All-Star and five-time World Series champion, paid a visit to Saratoga Race Course on Friday. 

Rivera posed with John Velazquez after Velazquez was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame. Later in the day, Rivera handed out the trophy following the third race on the card, “The Spa Welcomes Mo!”

NYRA held a press conference with Rivera and released the following quotes late Friday: About tenure with Albany-Colonie Yankees: “As I passed by the airport…it was a great memory for me. The time I was here playing I had a great time and the fans were the greatest.”

About backstretch tour with John Velazquez: “I did enjoy that. Johnny was tremendous with me this morning…it was wonderful. I had a tremendous morning. I didn’t know the nursing and care they do with these horses. It’s amazing. Today was like a school for me. I learned a lot. Next time I will know a little bit more about horses.”

About Hall of Fame Jockey John Velazquez: “It takes special players and special people to do that. And he is one of them.”

About pitching career: “I want to pitch now. But that doesn’t mean I will come back this year. It’s that one percent we have to hope and keep praying that the Lord will heal me as quick as possible. But at the same time you cannot push it. If you push it, you’ll make a mistake. Instead of pitching this year, you won’t pitch again next year. I have to be wise and make sure I do the right thing.”

Rivera with Velazquez/NYRA photo

  • Pegfrench

    Mariano is a class act

    • http://www.michaelwcompton.com/ Michael W. Compton

       I agree Pegfrench. It always helps to get some athletes from other sports out to the races to learn what racing is all about! Thanks for the comment.