Horses Arrive from Venezuela for Clasico at Gulfstream
Nov 4, 2018
Clasico Internacional del Caribe Returns Saturday, Dec. 8
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL
– Ten horses from Venezuela arrived Saturday at Gulfstream Park to prepare for the Clasico Internacional del Caribe Saturday, Dec. 8.
Gulfstream, which became the first pari-mutuel facility last year outside Latin America or the Caribbean to the host the event since its inception in 1966, will once again play host to five races for horses from eight Latin American and Caribbean countries with purses totaling more than $700,000. The highlight of the day will be the $300,000 Clasico del Caribe for 3-year-olds.
“Last year’s Clasico Internacional del Caribe was an incredible event,” said Bill Badgett, General Manager of Gulfstream Park. “The energy from the crowd was amazing and it was a day with a truly international vibe. We’re excited about having the Clasico return and be such a big part of our Championship Meet.”
Horses arriving Saturday from Venezuela after spending eight days in quarantine included Rosalba Maria, a daughter of Uncle Mo who won the Clasico Asamblea Nacional; Asociacion Hipica de Propietarios winner Jorge Zeta; and Hierro Colado, who won the Copa Water Poet and will be trained by Gilberto Zerpa.
Zerpa, who watched as Hierro Colado stepped off the van at Gulfstream, said it’s exciting to see the Clasico return to Gulfstream.
“It’s very important that Caribe del Clasico come to Gulfstream because it’s very important for the leading programs (in Latin America and the Caribbean) to make an effort to bring better horses who are more competitive to compete, because (Gulfstream) is the top of the game,” Zerpa said.
Zerpa said he’s watched video of Hierro Colado’s races and that he’s been impressed.
“He’s a speedy horse, and that’s the kind I like under my training program,” he said. “Three weeks ago he won a nice stakes easy and I expect him to do the same here.”
The Clasico Internacional del Caribe has a storied history of bringing together the best horses and jockeys, competitive races and emotional and festive crowds.
Horses, trainers, grooms, jockeys and members of The Confederation of Caribbean Racetracks bring a truly international flavor to Gulfstream.
The Clasico’s history includes the participation of Hall of Fame jockeys Laffit Pincay Jr., Jacinto Vasquez, John Velazquez and Javier Castellano as well as Gustavo Avila, Joel Rosario, Emisael Jaramillo and Jose Lezcano. They will come from the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago.
Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. won three of the Clasico races last year including the Clasico del Caribe with Mexico’s Jala Jala.