The following appeared in The Paulick Report June 20. Jockey Edgar Prado developed a big Virginia fan base in the early years of Colonial Downs in winning three riding titles. His star grew even brighter when he reached the winners circle in three straight Virginia Derbies from 2002-2004 atop Orchard Park, Siler Tree and Kitten’s Joy.
Hall of Fame jockey Edgar Prado has announced his retirement from the saddle, bloodhorse.com reported on Tuesday. The 56-year-old native of Peru last rode on Jan. 6, 2023 at Gulfstream Park, and had been unable to attain mounts during the ensuing months.
Trainers “all wanted new riders,” Prado told bloodhorse.com. “I totally understand that. When I was 20, I took somebody’s place and now somebody is taking my place.
“It was getting harder and harder and I was wasting the time that I spent with my family, with my loved ones.”
‘Prado retires with 7,119 winners from 39,725 starts, good for eighth all-time among North American jockeys.
Prado, who rode as an apprentice in Peru, began riding in the U.S. in 1986. He notched his first win aboard Single Love at Calder on June 1, 1986. Between 1990 and 1999, Prado won 300 or more races in a single season six times including a high of 535 in 1997. Prado won the George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award (2003) and Mike Venezia Memorial Award (2006), and also led the nation in wins from 1997-99.
He captured the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Jockey in 2006, the same year he won the Kentucky Derby aboard the ill-fated Barbaro. Prado also won the Belmont Stakes twice, in 2002 with Sarava and in 2004 with Birdstone.
The jockey owns five Breeders’ Cup victories: the 2015 Sprint aboard Runhappy, the 2010 Filly & Mare Turf aboard Shared Account, the 2006 Distaff aboard Round Pond, the 2005 Juvenile Fillies aboard Folklore, and the 2005 Sprint aboard Silver Train.