Triple Crown winner Victor Espinoza returns to riding
ARCADIA, Calif. (AP) — Triple Crown-winning jockey Victor Espinoza returned to riding at Santa Anita after a whirlwind of appearances since winning the Belmont Stakes aboard American Pharoah to complete the sport’s first Triple Crown victory since 1978.
He’s scheduled to ride again on Saturday. Espinoza returned to riding at Santa Anita on Thursday for the first time since the Belmont Stakes on June 6.
The 43-year-old jockey is scheduled to ride in the $1.175 million Summit of Speed at Florida’s Gulfstream Park on July 5. He’ll also ride in a convertible in the Fourth of July parade in Sierra Madre, the Los Angeles suburb where he lives.
The city council will present him with a special commendation for his part in the Triple Crown at its meeting on June 23.
“I know there is more pressure on me than before because now everyone is focused on me and what I’m doing,” Espinoza said Saturday. “Now every time I make a mistake, people will know about it.”
American Pharoah, who returned home to Santa Anita last Thursday, took to the track Saturday for a one-mile jog with an exercise rider. He’ll parade between races on June 27. His next race is undetermined.