Texas-based trainer Ramon Flores died Tuesday morning in car accident near Schulenberg, Texas. Flores and groom Rafael Hernandez were hauling three horses to Sunland Park in New Mexico when the trainer lost control of their van after hitting an icy patch on the road. Hernandez and the three horses escaped without injury.
Flores had nominated Winning Fans to the March 2 Borderland Derby at Sunland Park and had sent registration papers for three additional horses to during the weekend at Sunland Park, said Sunland Park racing secretary Norm Amundson. Winning Fans had finished third in the Jan. 25 Le Comte Stakes (gr. III) at Fair Grounds.
Flores, 34, was fifth in the trainer standings at Sam Houston with a record of 104 starts, 16 wins, 12 seconds, and 12 thirds. He had won the $75,000 Martanza Handicap on Texas Champions Day with Manzottina for Cuadra Valedor of Mexico City. Flores had conditioned previous stakes winners Kentucky Bay, and Pleasant State.
Flores is survived by his wife, Amy, son Fernando, 8, and daughter, Brisenia, 1.
Donations may be sent to the Ramon Flores Fund in care of the Racetrack Chaplaincy of Texas, 7575 Sam Houston Parkway West, Houston, Texas, 77064.