I am not afraid to admit Maria Remedio (aka Maria Charles) is easily my favorite jockey and she recently took some time off (to have a child) and I begged (lol) her to do to a new updated interview with me and she agreed so I fired off some questions to her via email and here is what she said to my questions and I even threw some funny questions in with the more serious ones and I hope you all enjoy the interview as much as I do:
FOTH: Trainer Corey Day wanted me ask you when are you coming back to riding and when will you be down at Barn # 19 getting on horses for him?
MR: Well I think the second part of this question was answered when I showed up Wednesday Jan, 13th and got on 6 for him!!! (breezing 4, galloping 1 and jogging 1) and this is after not sitting on a horse/not doing anything for 11 months!!!I will come back to ride when he gets the original Seeger crew back together so we can start dominating Philly Park again!!
FOTH: What are your thoughts on going out to Hoosier Park and riding in the
female jockey challenge there and would you do something like that again?
MR: To be honest Chris I probably would go do the female jockey challenge again, I think they are an awesome idea. I am so glad we have one put together at Philly Park. (there is going to be one in 2010 and your more than welcome to be in it-chris). It really promotes girl riders for the day and we all know that the females need all the support and help they can get!
FOTH: What would you say is your proudest moment as a jockey?
MR: WOW... I have saved this question to come back to for last! Okay now that I have answered all the rest this is the only one left. This is a tough question to answer. I would have to say I have a couple proud moments. I would start it off by saying the wins I had for my parents. You love winning as a jockey, but when it is for your mom and dad there is NO OTHER feeling in the world. Then I would have to say winning the meet at Atlantic City in 2008. That was one of my biggest accomplishments. Another would be winning numerous races back to back to back on Emperor and Henry Street and last would be being invited to Jamaica to ride for the jockey challenge there! That's an experience I will never forget and would do again in a heart beat!
FOTH: When somebody says "Philadelphia Park" to you what do you think
MR: I think of my life!! I think of my friends, my career, the horse's I have fallen in love with (especially EMPEROR), the people that have helped me out, the people that have hurt me, my injuries, and most importantly BARN 19 and the Seeger/Corey crew! I also think how I wish they would clean up the place. They put more into the slots and nothing into the backside. To be honest I think of the track and how much nicer it could be and really should be. I think of the potholes on the backside. I think of it ALOT, more then I care to share! LOL I could go on for days!!
FOTH: What tracks have you rode at so far and do you have any that you didn't like to ride at?
MR: I have ridden at Philly Park (of course), Delaware Park, Laurel, Pimlicio, Aqueduct, Hoosier, Penn National, Monmouth, Atlantic City, Thistle Downs, and a track in Jamaica... and I can honestly say the only track I do not like riding at is PENN NATIONAL!!! To me it is depressing for some reason. I don't care for night racing at all and in the winter is it always sooo much colder (because of the mountains), the jockey's room is like a jail. It is just not my favorite at all.
FOTH: Does your thumb ever get tired of taking all those pictures with me lol?
MR: NOT AT ALL...as long as you keep taking pic's with me I will always be ready with my thumb and a smile!!
FOTH: Have you ever got recognized by somebody outside the racetrack that
knew you were a jockey?
MR: A couple of times. One time I was out with my mother and an older couple came up to me and asked "are you that girl jockey from Philadelphia park that rides for Robert Seeger?" They said that they bet on my a couple times and made them money (thank god)
FOTH: I know your on a break from riding, but do you think you could get up on a horse and race ride with little or no problem now?
MR: I definitely think there would be a problem. First off I would look like***** (lol), second I would probably fall off and third I wouldn't be able to walk to next day! I haven't been on a horse in 11 months nor have done any sort of exercise. I went into work for Corey Day (Seeger's assistant) yesterday and got on 6 horse's. Felt surprisingly good all morning and now the next day I am eating ibuprofen to take away the muscle pain! lol
FOTH: Do you miss riding at all?
MR: OMG, you have no idea!! I wish I could go back tomorrow, but I can't. I am a mother now and refuse to leave my son all morning, day and early evening to sit in a jockeys room, maybe every once in a while I would like to ride a race but I would never leave him all day everyday!
FOTH: As a jockey, how would you deal with the cold weather?
MR: It isn't how would you deal with it Christopher, you just WOULD deal with it the best you could. I would have to say lot's of layers, surgical gloves, face masks, hand and feet warmers, lined boots, and lots of thinking in your mind you were really in Florida and it was hot out!!
FOTH: Also as a jockey, was it tough for you getting up early in the morning
or did you just get used to it after a while?
MR: At first, on cold days, it definitely is, but after a while your body just programs itself to wake up at a certain time every morning. Half the time I would get up before my alarm clock even went off!
FOTH: In a picture posted on my site from Hoosier Park I jokingly said I could kiss your feet for making the picture happen. You told me you could more than make that happen. Question for you is, should I get ready to pucker up my lips this spring/summer and if I kiss your feet are you going to take a picture of me kissing them and are you going to make me post it on my website and Facebook Page ha ha?
MR: YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT!! It will also be the pic on your main page!! I will be nice and at least get a pedicure done for you before you have to kiss them!! So is it a DEAL or what?? (you name the time and place and I'll be there-chris)
FOTH: You are a big fan of the Dallas Cowboys as I am. How happy are you with their recent playoff win over the Philadelphia Eagles?
MR: Happy isn't the word! My mom, Corey, the baby and myself all watched the game at mom's house. Corey is a big Eagles fan so you know we were busting on him to whole time (poor guy never got a break) and then you know after they won not only the first game, but crushed them again the next week I had to pick on another friend from Philly Park Jason!! EAGLES will always suck! Chris you know that's the truth!!
(even though they lost the following week, them beating the Eagles and knocking them out of the playoffs is my Super Bowl ha ha...any team, any, but Phila is my motto-chris)
FOTH: If you could change a few things about the sport of horse racing what
would they be?
MR: Well first I would change Philadelphia Parks racetrack
and backside! Next I would change the whip rule back to how it used to be...the
new sticks are a joke...they should have just taken the stick away altogether
and let people learn how to handride! I would change a couple other things too,
but I am not going to talk about them might cause to much drama!
FOTH: In your career did you ever get into a fist fight with another jockey
ever up in the room or during a race? How about a heated argument? If you did
MR: Ha Ha don't we all. I got into it with a couple of the other female riders. See I only get along with a few people so it was bound to happen. One was just a heated argument and the other was just a girl rider I didn't have any respect for and did not care to ever like. I would put shaving cream in her boots before she went out to ride, then I threw away her toothbrush one day and even put boot polish around the brim of her helmet. I was rotten and immature Chris! I did the things that people shouldn't do to someone else because I wouldn't like it if it was done to me
FOTH: Tell me a couple funny jockey stories and you don't have to name names
if you don't want to.
MR: The funniest one I can think of is when I had a dare by Darci Rice (my valet at Delaware Park). I went up to a WELL known QUIET jockey (no names) and put one of my arms behind his head and asked him what it was called (a half nelson) then I put the other arm behind his head and asked him what that was called (a full nelson). Then I humped him and asked him what that was called (father nelson). Everyone in the whole jockeys room was laughing and couldn't believe I had enough guts to do it!
FOTH: Did you ever have a chance to give a fellow jockey the jockey initiation after him/her winning their first race and if so what did you do to him/her?
MR: Yes a couple bug boys. I put a couple cracked eggs in water and dumped it on their head or used shaving cream. That's it really. The guys do all the good stuff to each other in the back where the girls aren't allowed to go
FOTH: If you can remember did you ever bring in any 99-1
shots or more during your riding career?
MR: Oh definitely a couple of them. They are the best. When you are a jockey. They are not the horse's that you want to ride, but when u do, and you get one to win, it is one of the best feeling in the world!
FOTH: Looking back over your career so far, do you feel you were given a fair
chance as a jockey?
MR: For the most part I have to say yes I was. There are a few people that don't believe in girl riders that I strongly disagree with, but they are mostly the old school trainers. I did very well in my career so far so I can't complain at all.
FOTH: Have you ever been in the casino area at any of the local tracks and if you have did you bet any money and if you did bet some money did you win any money?
MR: I am not a big gambler at all. The only casino I have played at would be Penn National with JOJO (Joanne Mcdaid-chris) when I was killing some time after the races. Never won, but only lost at the most $20.
FOTH: What was the worst injury you ever had and does that injury still bother you at all?
MR: The worst injury was breaking my collar bone when I was a bug rider No it does not bother me one bit anymore
FOTH: How did you find out that hamburgers are one of my favorite things to
eat and I heard your a good cook so when am I coming over for dinner lol?
MR: Your wife told me when you were both up in NY and you can come over for dinner anytime.
FOTH: If I was standing next to you right now, what would you have me do lol?
MR: Probably go get me a drink and make me one of the fajita's mom is cooking for dinner! lol
FOTH: Any last words. Mega thumbs up for doing this 3rd interview.
MR: Yeah prepare to pucker up and kiss my feet this summer Christopher!!!
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