Garcia wasted no time after moving his tack to Oaklawn, scoring the Smarty Jones Stake aboard Gold Street for trainer Steve Asmussen on opening day of the 2020 season. He would also win the Spring Fever for Joe Sharp. He tied for second in the standings with 53 wins and more than $2.4 million in earnings.
Garcia and trainer Bob Baffert have had great success together. In 2010, he rode Lookin at Lucky to victory in Oaklawn's Rebel Stakes before going on to win the Preakness Stakes (G1) and Haskell Invitational (G1) en route to Champion 3-Year-Old honors. The following year, he would pilot Baffert-trained filly Plum Pretty Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs Racetrack in Kentucky.
Over the past 10 years, the affable Garcia has paired with Baffert to cut quite a swath through the Breeders’ Cup championships. All four of the rider’s victories have come aboard Baffert trainees: Bayern in the 2014 Classic (G1); New Year’s Day in the 2013 Juvenile (G1); Secret Circle in the 2013 Sprint (G1) and Drefong in the 2016 Sprint.
Though he’s not the go-to guy he once was for Baffert, he still gets aboard some horses for him on occasion, including being aboard Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Authentic when he posted his final workout before his runner-up effort in the Preakness Stakes (G1).
Garcia immigrated to the United States in 2003 and went to work at a delicatessen in Pleasanton, California. The deli's owner introduced him to a former jockey who helped him get started in horse racing as a stable hand and exercise rider. Garcia spent six months galloping horses before riding races at Golden Gate Fields in Northern California.