A big Breeders’ Cup birthday for jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr.?

It could be a very special birthday for locally-based jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr.

Hernandez, Jr, will be aboard Fort Larned for the Breeders’ Cup Classic on Nov. 3 – also the day of his 27th birthday.

It’s been an eventful year for the jockey. He recently married wife Jamie and has enjoyed success with his Classic contender, Fort Larned. A Kentucky-bred son of E Dubai trained by Ian Wilkes, Fort Larned won the Prairie Meadows Cornhusker Handicap before pulling off an upset in the Grade 1 Whitney.

In his most recent start, the 4-year-old Fort Larned was third behind Flat Out and Stay Thirsty in the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup.

Fort Larned worked five furlongs in 1:01.00 at Churchill Downs Monday in preparation for the Classic.

Like many of the Classic contenders, this will be the first trip West for Fort Larned. His running style could be well-suited to the Santa Anita track – suggesting a big birthday party in the winners’ circle is a possibility.

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