Born: February 5, 1968, in Tijuana, Mexico
Residence: Monrovia, California
David Flores’s steady rise into the upper echelon of North American riders has garnered hi as one of the all time jockeys. Last year Flores finished sixth on the earnings list after his mounts
David Flores became a jockey in Tijuana Mexico and by the age of 8 he was riding match races, and later was an exercise rider in Southern California.
Flores earned his first win in 1984, at Agua Caliente with a record with apprentice 61 victories. He moved to Southern California in 1989 and has won titles at Santa Anita Park, Del Mar, Oak Tree, Fairplex, and the Orange County Fair. In 1999, he led all Southern California riders with 208 winners, including 11 graded stakes.
Outside of California he has won the Kentucky Oaks (G1) aboard Keeper Hill and in 2003 he annexed the Arlington Million Stakes (G1) with Sulamani (Fr). The Million became one of the most controversial races of the year when Storming Home (GB) finished first, but spooked just before the wire, veered into the path of two other horses; unseating jockey Gary Stevens, who suffered a collapsed lung and fractured vertebra.
Flores has ridden the winners of over 200 stakes races during his career. While many jockeys hope to win a million dollar race, Flores has been victorious in eight of them: Marquetry in the 1991 Hollywood Gold Cup (G1), Siphon (Brz) in both the 1996 Hollywood Gold Cup (G1) and 1997 Santa Anita Handicap (G1), General Challenge in the 1999 Pacific Classic Stakes (G1), Tempera in the 2001 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1), Sulamani (Ire) in the 2003 Arlington Million Stakes (G1), Action This Day in the 2003 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1), and Singletary in the 2004 Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1). In total he has earned $108-million during his 23-year career.
Flores’s best finishes in the Kentucky Derby have been a third aboard Free House in 1997 and a fourth aboard Atswhatimtalknbout in 2003. Last year was his first mount in the Preakness Stakes (G1) when he guided Greeley’s Galaxy to a seventh place finish. He has never ridden in the Belmont Stakes (G1).
Each summer, the rider sponsors a golf tournament to benefit needy children in his native Tijuana.