American Pharoah to victory, then donated winnings to charity
When it comes to horse racing, we tend to remember the names of the horses more than the jockeys, but here’s a jockey you really should know.
On June 6, American Pharoah became the first horse to win racing’s Triple Crown in 37 years.
It’s just the 12th horse in history to win all of the three major racing events in a single year — the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes.
But there’s another part of this story you might not have heard about: the jockey.
American Pharoah’s jockey, Victor Espinoza, donated all his winnings from the Belmont Stakes to charity.
All of it. Reportedly $80,000.
The charity is City of Hope, and they fight cancer, HIV/AIDS, and other life-threatening illnesses.In an interview with ABC News, Espinoza casually mentioned his plans for the massive payday.”I won the Triple Crown right now, but I don’t make any money because I’m donating all the money to the City of Hope.”The group confirmed Espinoza’s plans to donate on their website, and included another statement from him:”Good health — that’s what I want for everyone. With good health, people can enjoy life and do those things that make them happy. By working to defeat cancer, City of Hope’s researchers and doctors are bringing a greater chance of health and happiness to people everywhere.”
American Pharoah’s trainer, Bob Baffert, also donated his Belmont winnings, splitting it between three charities.
Bob and Jill Baffert following American Pharoah’s win at the Belmont Stakes.
According to Louisville’s Courier-Journal, Baffert and his wife Jill will donate $50,000 to the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund, $50,000 to the California Retirement Management Account, and $50,000 to Old Friends Farm.
As the name would suggest, the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund provides financial assistance to former jockeys who have suffered severe on-track injuries. The California Retirement Management Account is a fund to care for retired racehorses. Old Friends Farm is a retirement facility for horses located in Georgetown, Kentucky.
Between Baffert and Espinoza, even those of us who aren’t fans of horse racing have quite a bit to cheer for.
Because at the end of the day, American Pharoah goes back to being a horse. A really cool horse and all, but still a horse.
Here’s a prime example of a cool horse.
His jockey and his trainer used their winnings to help save and improve some lives.
Years from now, when you think back on American Pharoah’s historic run, be sure to remember his team, too.
For the third time in four years, Belmont Park will play host to a Triple Crown hopeful when American Pharoah attempts to add the 147th running of the Grade 1, $1.5 million Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 6, the final and most demanding leg of the series, to his victories in the Kentucky Derby and in the rain-drenched Preakness.
It will mark the 14th time since Affirmed swept all three races in 1978 that a horse has had a chance to join the 11 Triple Crown champions; none have succeeded. Three of those attempts have been by American Pharoah’s Hall of Fame trainer, Bob Baffert, who won the first two legs in 1997 with Silver Charm; 1998 with Real Quiet and 2002 with War Emblem. Two previous attempts were also made by jockey Victor Espinoza, who rode California Chrome to a fourth-place finish in 2014, and was also aboard War Emblem.
WHEN: Saturday, June 6, 2015: Post time for Belmont Stakes: 6:50 p.m. ET WHERE: Belmont Park – Elmont, N.Y. HOW TO WATCH:
Belmont Stakes prep, NBC Sports Network, 2:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m.
Belmont Stakes, NBC, 4:30 p.m.-7 p.m.
Belmont Stakes post, NBC Sports Network, 7:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
Total Wagered : $4,042,699.00
Last Updated at 12:41:38 PM
1 – Mubtaahij [IRE]
Jockey : Irad Ortiz, Jr.
Owner : Essafinaat
Trainer : Michael de Kock
15 – 1
M/L 10 – 1
2 – Tale of Verve
Jockey : Gary Stevens
Owner : Fipke, Charles, E.
Trainer : Dallas Stewart
19 – 1
M/L 15 – 1
3 – Madefromlucky
Jockey : Javier Castellano
Owner : Cheyenne Stables LLC and Nichol, Mac
Trainer : Todd Pletcher
14 – 1
M/L 12 – 1
4 – Frammento
Jockey : Mike Smith
Owner : Mossarosa
Trainer : Nicholas Zito
20 – 1
M/L 30 – 1
5 – American Pharoah
Jockey : Victor Espinoza
Owner : Zayat Stables, LLC
Trainer : Bob Baffert
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DORTMUND – He looked good in the Derby is he the spoiler?
2015 Preakness Stakes Post Positions and Odds Post Horse Odds Trainer Jockey
1 American Pharoah 5-6 Bob Baffert Victor Espinoza
2 Dortmund 15-4 Bob Baffert Martin Garcia
3 Mr. Z 25-1 D. Wayne Lukas Corey Nakatani
4 Danzig Moon 16-1 Mark Casse Julien Leparoux
5 Tale of Verve 50-1 Dallas Stewart Joel Rosario
6 Bodhisattva 40-1 Jose Corrales Trevor McCarthy
7 Divining Rod 16-1 Arnaud Delacour Javier Castellano
8 Firing Line 17-4 Simon Callaghan Gary Stevens
Date: Saturday, May 16
Where: Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore
TV Time: 4:30-6:30 p.m. ET
Post Time: 6:18 p.m. ET