Prominent Puerto Rico Trainer Morales to Base At Gulfstream
Leparoux Will Have Working Holiday at Gulfstream
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Trainer Ramon Morales, who has trained multiple champions and 82 stakes winners in his native Puerto Rico, has taken up residence at Gulfstream Park with a dozen 2-year-olds for Frank Stronach.
"I'm very excited because this is such a great opportunity for me," said the 47-year-old Morales one recent morning.
Morales is no stranger to racing, having started working at the track at the age of 16 in Puerto Rico and them moving to the U.S. to work as a groom and then assistant trainer to Eddie Coletti. Morales returned to Puerto Rico in 1995 and took out his trainer's license. His brother is Jose Morales, a jockey's agent in New York.
"I have 12 right now for Mr. Stronach, all 2-year-olds, and I have two 4-year-old fillies coming from Puerto Rico," said Morales. One of those is Gabbywithag, a winner of 18 races.
In Puerto Rico, Morales, who has won more than 1,200 races, saddled Fusaichiswonderful to five consecutive victories before she was shipped to the U.S., where she finished second in the Eight Belles (G3) and fourth in the Forward Gal (G2). He also trains Joe Pike, a winner of 10 of 11 including the Copa Quatro de Julio Stakes (G1) at Camarero Race Track earlier this month.
Leparoux Takes Working Holiday
Jockey Julien Leparoux, the top rider at Keeneland's spring meet and third at the recently-concluded Churchill meet, has been named to ride at Gulfstream Thursday and Friday while he visits South Florida.
Leparoux has been named to ride Miss Emelina in Thursday's eighth race and Little Michelle in Friday's second race.