Torres Earns Jockey of the Week 1/17/24



Photo: Coady Photography

LEXINGTON, KY (January 17, 2024) Cristian Torres posted four wins on Saturday at Oaklawn Park including a stakes win to take the lead in the jockey standings. Torres, Oaklawn’s defending leading rider, was voted Jockey of the Week by the panel of racing experts for the week of Monday, January 8 through Sunday, January 14.

The weekly award recognizes jockeys for riding accomplishments and who are members of the Jockeys’ Guild, the organization which represents more than 1050 active, retired and permanently disabled jockeys in the United States.

Making the most of an abbreviated week of racing due to severe weather, Torres posted one win on Friday, aboard Honor Cat for trainer Robertino Diodoro before winning four races on Saturday. Torres won the third race aboard Play the Trumpet for trainer Miguel Angel Silva, the fourth race with Jackman for trainer Karl Broberg, the fifth race for trainer Kenny McPeek aboard Common Defense and the inaugural running of the Mockingbird Stakes with the unbeaten Midshipman’s Dance for trainer Robertino Diodoro. No stranger to multiple win days, Torres won three races on January 1.

Off at odds of 5-1, Midshipman’s Dance broke from the rail in the field of six three-year-old fillies going six furlongs. Midshipman’s Dance saved ground while racing mid-pack when Torres called on the filly at the top of the stretch. The pair took command over pacesetter Sharp Tune and rebuffed the hard-charging Tanya Showers, posting a one-half length win in 1:10.81.

“I was hoping that we would have a fast pace, so we could make a move at the end,” said Torres. It definitely worked out perfect for us.”

On his four-win day, Torres remarked “Nice day. Very happy with all the opportunities and all the trainers that gave me the opportunities today.”

A native of Puerto Rico, Torres, 26, is a former exercise rider for trainer Mark Casse and posted his first career win at Gulfstream Park on April 21, 2019. He won his first career riding title at Remington Park in 2022. He now rides at Kentucky tracks and Oaklawn Park. In capturing the leading rider title at Oaklawn Park last season, Torres was just the second Oaklawn jockey to reach 100 wins in a meeting joining Hall of Famer Pat Day. He rode four winners on a card three times and five winners once last season. He set a single season Oaklawn Park record for purse earnings last season with $6,163,941.

Torres currently tops the Oaklawn Park standings with 15 wins, two more than Francisco Arrieta.

Other contenders for Jockey of the Week included Frankie Dettori with a win in the Gr. III Las Cienegas, Trevor McCarthy with a stakes win at Aqueduct, Jose Ortiz who posted 10 wins for the week and Eclipse Award finalist, Irad Ortiz, Jr. who won a stakes race at Gulfstream Park and also posted 10 wins.

Statistics provided by: Equibase