Israel Ocampo

 Born: Oct. 8, 1986

 Birthplace: Mexico City, Mexico

 Family: Single 

  • Brave enough to leave home for America at age 18, Israel Ocampo is a rising star in the Oaklawn jocks room and returns for his sixth season after another solid meet in 2013, finishing among the top 10.
  • Biggest win in 2013 came aboard Livi Makenzie in the $100,000 Saylorville Stakes at Prairie Meadows.
  • Raised in Mexico City, Ocampo followed his older brother, Isaac (15 years older than Israel) into Quarter Horse racing at the Hippodromo de las Americas. At age 16, he got his license and started riding competitively, winning 125 races in a year-and-a-half and setting him on course for New York.
  • With little English skills, Ocampo was forced to delay his dreams of becoming a Thoroughbred jockey but gained work as an exercise rider for John Kimmel and Mark Hennig. While in Florida, he made connections to resume his career in Chicago and set up shop there in 2007. He won the spring meet title at Hawthorne Race Course that year. Stints at Canterbury Park in Minnesota helped him gain a foothold with other leading barns in the Midwest, giving him the ammunition to ride at Oaklawn beginning in 2008.
  • His biggest stakes success so far came with Wayzata Bay in the 2008 Cornhusker at Prairie Meadows. After a solid season at Delaware Park in 2010, Ocampo has stayed in the Midwest, riding at Prairie Meadows and Hawthorne.