KARAMANOS RETURNS WITH A WIN

Horacio Karamanos, the leading all time rider at Colonial Downs, made his 2009 season debut at the New Kent track Monday evening and he immediately made his presence felt.

After riding in Argentina for the first three weeks of Colonial‘s annual summer stand, Karamanos, nicknamed “Special K” in the Commonwealth, earned a third aboard Ferris Allen’s Bellatrix O in his first start back. He followed with another third atop Lord Smellington, a long shot in the fifth that paid $13.40 to show in a deep fourteen horse field.

After finishing “out of the money” in his third start back, Karamanos finally got to the winners circle with another Allen trainee, the favored Valetine Avenue ($4.80) in the eighth race. The 6 year old Unbridled Jet gelding cruised past front running Menifee Man past the three-quarters mark then held off fast closing Naturel Resources at the finish by less than a length.

Karamanos, who plans to race in Virginia for the balance of the meet, has won four Colonial Downs riding titles in the last seven years, including back-to-back honors in 2007-08. The win on Monday was his 359th at Colonial and his mounts have earned over $6.7 million. He scored the biggest win of his career in the ’07 Virginia Derby aboard Red Giant.