Joe Talamo Proves Once Again That the Sky’s the Limit on the Track This Season
Written By: Matthew Black Joe Talamo
It didn’t take long for jockey Joe Talamo to figure out his calling in life. At age seven his father brought him to the fairgrounds in Marrero, Louisiana to watch horse races. He was a trainer, and landed young Talamo a job cleaning stables and walking horses. He knew right then and there that Talamo wanted to be a jockey. Now, 20 years later, he’s competing in Del Mar Thoroughbred Club’s first ever hosting of the Breeders’ Cup.
Talamo may have been bred to be a jockey, but it took hard work to get to where he is today. Before he was old enough to even vote, legendary horse trainer Bobby Frankel recognized his talent and brought him out to Southern California. Not long after that, Talamo won the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint in 2009 at the age of 19.
Since then Southern California has been his home. It didn’t take much, having made the decision to relocate permanently after only three days here. Now he enjoys racing seasons at such fantastic venues as Del Mar Thoroughbred Club. “Del Mar is a great track because of its location next to the ocean and great atmosphere there everyday,” he says.
“It is always a good meet to compete in.” Del Mar’s racing season begins in high fashion on July 19. It’s a special year for Del Mar, because they host The Breeders’ Cup in November too. Expect to find Talamo there riding high atop a Thoroughbred of his own.
Talamo couldn’t comment on who he’ll be riding come November, but last June he rode the powerful Melatonin to victory in a Grade 1 race in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita. This earned Melatonin an automatic spot in the Breeders’ Cup Classic race, which carries a purse of $6 million for the winner.
With over $90 million in lifetime earnings, we hope to see Talamo pilot a worthy steed to victory in November. Until then, he’s got a season to think about. “My expectations in Del Mar every year is to win as many races as I can.” With his pedigree he stands a good shot at crossing the finish line first in any race in which he participates. That’s as good a bet as any.
Top Tips for the Track: Racetrack Talk With Craig Dado, CMO and Executive VP of Del Mar Thoroughbred Club
Trophy Look: “Everybody has their different style, but no matter how you dress, don’t leave your ‘A’ outfit in the closet,” Dado says.
Bet on It: “When it comes to horse racing, just remember that nobody really knows anything. Don’t be afraid to pick a long shot,” Dado explains. He says not to hesitate to pick by color or name either! “Bet win, place, and show for that horse. That way you’re likely to win something,” Dado says.
Such Great Heights: Eat at Seventeen Hands, suggests Dado. The name stems from the height of a very tall, legendary horse named Zenyatta. It’s right on the paddock and serves gourmet tacos.
Del Mar Racetrack
2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd
Del Mar, CA 92014
Champion Jockey Joe Talamo Prepares for a Big Season in Del Mar