Brian Hernandez

Brian Hernandez

Anne M. Eberhardt

Classic Winner Hernandez to Winter in Florida

Jockey for Fort Larned plans to compete at Gulfstream Park once Churchill meet ends.

Jockey Brian Hernandez Jr., winner of the $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) aboard Fort Larned  Nov. 3, will move his tack to Gulfstream Park this winter following the fall meet at Churchill Downs.

Hernandez, who registered the biggest win of his career on his 27th birthday at Santa Anita Park, has been spending his winters racing at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.
“I talked it over with (agent) Frank (Bernis) Tuesday and he was already thinking about it,” Hernandez said. “It makes sense to go now. We can walk into any barn and say, ‘Hey, we won the Breeders’ Cup Classic.’ Now is the best time to go.”
Hernandez won the Classic for trainer Ian Wilkes. He captured the Ack Ack Handicap (gr. III) at Churchill Downs a day earlier with Neck 'n Neck, who is being pointed to the Clark Handicap Presented by Norton Healthcare (gr. I) Nov. 23.
“Fort Larned and Neck ’n Neck are both going (to Florida) and we want to follow them,” Hernandez said. “We also want to try to pick up some other business.”
Hernandez picked up his 1,000th career win Aug. 18 at Ellis Park, two weeks after guiding Fort Larned to victory in the Whitney Invitational Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course.

His father, Brian Sr., and younger brother, Colby, are riders in Louisiana.