(James Graham continues to hold the lead in the current Jockey Standings at the Fair Grounds / Photo Courtesy of Keeneland)

James Graham is a tough rider. Ask anyone, anywhere. He can ride on the lead. He can encourage one from off the pace. He can excel on the grass course. He wins more than his share on the dirt. All the while, he never gives an inch to another, and asks a mile of his mounts.

And, this year’s meet at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans is a prime example of the man’s ability and tenacity. Although he may not be the most recognizable and familiar name in the rider colony at the Fair Grounds or across the country, Graham has been making a bigger name for himself and his clients this winter in the “Big Easy.”

From Day 1 of this meet, Graham has been on a lot of horses. And, he has been on a roll, too. After Sunday’s races were concluded, he had 230 mounts and had 39 trips to the winner’s circle to extend his ride just a bit farther and longer. In addition, Graham has been about to tally 45 seconds and 27 thirds, as well.

For this efforts, Graham’s horses have now won over $1.2 million in purses this meet. That puts him about $300,000 more than any other rider at the meet.

Holding down the second spot is Adam Beschizza, who has a record of 36-20-39 in 231 rides so far. His horses have earned $957,350 in purse money.

Six wins farther back, in third, is Shaun Bridgmohan, who has posted 30 wins, 17 seconds and 11 thirds in just 132 mounts. His horses have posted $905,164 in purse money earned.

Here’s a closer look at the Top 25 riders this meet:

1 James Graham 230 39 45 27 $1,209,580 17% 111 48%
2 Adam Beschizza 231 36 20 39 $957,350 16% 95 41%
3 Shaun Bridgmohan 132 30 17 11 $905,165 23% 58 44%
4 Corey J. Lanerie 143 24 21 15 $898,031 17% 60 42%
5 Mitchell Murrill 235 29 31 34 $857,958 12% 94 40%
6 Colby J. Hernandez 220 27 33 36 $845,050 12% 96 44%
7 Florent Geroux 106 23 22 13 $827,827 22% 58 55%
8 Marcelino Pedroza 189 20 24 18 $600,550 11% 62 33%
9 Gabriel Saez 142 13 16 22 $542,288 9% 51 36%
10 Ricardo Santana, Jr. 85 16 16 10 $535,660 19% 42 49%
11 Joe Bravo 73 14 14 9 $496,740 19% 37 51%
12 Miguel Mena 145 14 16 12 $425,140 10% 42 29%
13 Jack Gilligan 165 10 21 19 $386,695 6% 50 30%
14 Ty Kennedy 130 13 17 12 $385,910 10% 42 32%
15 Chantal Sutherland 116 12 7 14 $227,071 10% 33 28%
16 Sophie Doyle 71 11 6 11 $218,880 15% 28 39%
17 Edgar Morales 76 9 7 5 $218,460 12% 21 28%
18 Aubrie Green 129 7 8 14 $201,160 5% 29 22%
19 Joseph Rocco, Jr. 40 5 2 5 $197,570 13% 12 30%
20 Jose Valdivia, Jr. 79 5 5 14 $194,370 6% 24 30%
21 Declan Carroll 95 5 10 11 $182,380 5% 26 27%
22 Tyler Gaffalione 4 2 1 1 $177,100 50% 4 100%
23 Brian Joseph Hernandez, Jr. 8 3 0 1 $174,860 38% 4 50%
24 Ezequiel Lara 109 3 9 10 $129,930 3% 22 20%
25 Channing Hill 10 2 1 1 $93,170 20% 4 40%

(Data Courtesy of Equibase)