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.
gotta love the ones that give!!!!