Victor Espinoza
FameRank: 6

"American Classic Races/American Classics / Breeders' Cup wins:"

Breeders' Cup Distaff (2000)

Kentucky Derby (2002, 2014)

Preakness Stakes (2002, 2014)

/awards = ESPY Awards/ESPY Award for Best Jockey (2002, 2014)

/honours =

/horses = War Emblem, Peace Rules, Behaving Badly, California Chrome, Congaree (horse)/Congaree

Declan's Moon, The Tin Man (horse)/The Tin Man, Bob and John

/updated = February 2, 2008


"Victor Espinoza" (born May 23, 1972) is a jockey in United States/American Thoroughbred horse race/Thoroughbred horse racing. He began riding in his native Mexico and went on to compete at racetracks in California. He has won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes twice, riding War Emblem in 2002 and California Chrome in 2014.

More Victor Espinoza on Wikipedia.

I was happy somebody went to the front. I didn't want to be on the lead. I just tracked right next to [Hawkinsville] but at the three-eighths pole I had to pick up the pace a little bit more. I wanted to get a good run for him through the stretch and when he turned for home, I just opened it up. He's really good right now. He finished well.

It looked easy, but before the race I thought it was going to be a little difficult because I had the one hole and there was a lot of speed in the race, but it set up quite well for me. I got lucky. I wanted him to break as sharp as he could but he kind of bobbled coming out of the gate, just a little bit, one or two jumps, he kind of lost his balance. After that it was no problem.

I think it helped me a lot to get that position in the first turn. That was the key right there.

Everything was good. It was the first time I ever rode her, but I'd been watching how she runs. I almost got the mount, but it never worked out. Today it did and she was easy to ride. Everything went perfect for me.

That was easy. She was just cruising around. She tries hard, this old mare and I didn't want to knock her out for this race. I made sure I just galloped around and won the race by two or three lengths.

I kind of lost my position right out of the gate. There was just a little too much ground to make up. I think it turned out to be a good experience for him, getting dirt kicked in his face and all.

He really felt nice today. It's great to see that he's coming back to his best again. It's just a matter of time and experience. He's improving every time out.