(from Gulfstream Park)
Elvis Trujillo earned the 1,000th win of his career when he guided Bahia Girl to victory in the first race April 12 at Gulfstream Park.
Trujillo reached the mark with a 1 3/4-length win over Princess Haya. Bahia Girl is a 4- year-old filly owned by Stronach Stables and trained by Brian Lynch. She paid $11.20.
“I’m very happy, this is a special moment in my career,” Trujillo said in the winner’s circle minutes after scoring the milestone win. “To come to this country so young with so many dreams and see them come true is very satisfying.
“The trip was beautiful. We got good positioning and got the result we wanted.”
Fifth in the jockey standings at Gulfstream with 44 victories, Trujillo, a 25-year-old native of Panama, has accumulated earnings of more than $1.3 million. Unaware until just a few days ago that he was on the verge of the mark, Trujillo put the accomplishment into perspective.
“We do this over and over again, so sometimes you don’t have time to enjoy the results,” said Trujillo. “I’ll remember this one for the rest of my life. They’re probably having a party in Panama.”
One of the sport's rising stars, Trujillo won his first riding title at Calder in 2007. Earlier that year at Gulfstream he had ridden Augustin Stable'’s future Eclipse champion filly Forever Together to victory in the Forward Gal Stakes (gr. II) for trainer Jonathan Sheppard.
Later that year, Trujillo jumped into the national spotlight with a half-length victory aboard Maryfield in the 2007 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint at Monmouth Park. He finished the year with 305 winners from 1,448 mounts and purse earnings of more than $8 million.
“Winning a Breeders’ Cup (race) put me on another level and opened doors,” said Trujillo. “I came to this country with a lot of expectations but winning a race of such magnitude is definitely something I will remember for the rest of my career.”
Trujillo scored in his first mount in the U.S. eight years ago for trainer Wesley Ward at Hollywood Park. He continued his impressive run as an apprentice winning his first two mounts at Arlington Park.
Another of a long list of graduates from the Laffit Pincay Jr. Jockey School, Trujillo won 35 races in Panama and 55 in Mexico City before coming to the U.S. in 2001.