Jockey Roman Cruz ended the week like an Oklahoma twister, blowing past his competition on his way to the top of the leader board in the jockeys’ standings, winning three races Sunday.

Those three victories gave him nine trips to the winner’s circle this meet, two more than any other rider. Ali Rivera was second by himself with seven victories after two weeks of racing. Cruz’s three-bagger was just the cherry on the top of a fantastic week as he also was victorious in winning the Grade 2 $55,280 Decketta Stakes on Saturday night for trainer Jesus Ruiz and owner Arrowhead Racing (Anita Ruiz) of Wapanucka, Okla., in the saddle of Alliekat Dynasty.

Cruz picked up Sunday right where he left off Saturday. He popped out of the gate, winning both halves of the Daily Double, riding with electric abandon. In the first race, he was all out to win by a neck aboard Face Paint, a 3-year-old Paint filly for last year’s leading trainer at Remington Park, Dee Keener. Face Paint, owned by Jeff Adams of Durant, Okla., is by He’s Relentless (QH), out of the Pyc Paint Your Wagon (QH) mare Paint This Kitty. That dam is a Paint. Face Paint had excuses in her only two starts of her career, hesitating in her career debut, running seventh. Then in her second time out, she drew a sloppy track and ran sixth. Those races were both in 2023 at Remington Park. Keener had her ready to roll this year and Cruz pushed all the right buttons. She was sent off at 5-1 odds. The even-money favorite, Clutch Shot, finished sixth.

Cruz’s second trip to the winner’s circle in the second race was just as hard fought. He pushed Memories of Dynasty to the win at 9-2 odds, just getting up by a head. The win came for trainer Leonardo Reza and owner Juan Galaviz of Sayre, Okla. That win put him into first place in the riders’ standings, passing Rivera.

His final win of the day came in the ninth race with 13-1 longshot Pretty Lie, who took the allowance feature race. The 4-year-old mare was racing in a field of stakes caliber QH fillies and mares. Pretty Lie had only raced once in similar company, finishing eighth, beaten almost five lengths in the $24,000 Miss Ellen Stakes at Will Rogers Downs in Claremore, Okla., on Oct. 15, 2023. Here is the catch, though. In her last two races, Pretty Lie had experienced troubles enough to give her excuses. In the Miss Ellen, she was bumped hard enough to force her to alter her path. She came right back against allowance horses at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas, and hopped at the start of that race, running eighth, beaten almost five lengths again.

On Sunday night, Cruz got on her for the first time and she broke cleanly and led the entire way for the 1-1/2 length victory at 350 yards in :17.213 for a speed index of 104. Cruz was a rider change announced before the races began. Randy Vega was named to ride the horse originally for Sunday’s race. Pretty Lie was a blessing for trainer Salimm Hernandez and owner Ismael Donato and Marcus Mora of Broken Arrow, Okla. She earned $17,463 with the win from the $33,050 purse. The mare improved to 12 starts, four wins, one second and one third for a bankroll of $55,947. She was a $37,000 purchase at the 2021 Heritage Place September Yearling Sale in Oklahoma City.

With Cruz riding high atop the jockeys’ standings with a daylight lead, here’s how the top five looks: 1) Cruz, 9; 2) Rivera, 7; tie 3) Erik Esqueda and Gonzalo Gutierrez, 6, and tie 5) Francisco Calderon, L. Salvador Martinez, and Edwin Escobedo, 5.

The top five trainers are: tie 1) Trey Wood and Dee Keener, 6; tie 3) Matt Whitekiller and Luz Chavira, 5, and 5) Jesus Ruiz, 4.

The top five owners are: 1) 918 Bloodstock, 3; tie 2) Gary Vaughan, Robin Haggard and Raider 5 Racing (Gary Aycock) all have 2 wins. A ton of people and racing entities are tied at 1 win.

Live racing resumes next week with a Thursday-Sunday schedule. First post time nightly is 6 p.m. except Sundays when the first race goes off at 4 p.m.

Remington Park has provided more than $345 Million to the State of Oklahoma general education fund since the opening of the casino in 2005. Located at the junction of Interstates 35 & 44, in the heart of the Oklahoma City Adventure District, Remington Park presents simulcast racing daily and non-stop casino gaming. The 83rd edition of the historic Oklahoma Futurity, first contested in 1947, will be run Saturday, March 23. The American Quarter Horse, Paint and Appaloosa Season continues through June 1. Parking and admission are always free. Must be 18 or older to wager on horse racing or enter the casino gaming floor. Visit for more information.