Santa Anita to Unveil McCarron Sculpture

(from Santa Anita release
Jockey Chris McCarron will take his place among three other legendary riders at Santa Anita when a bust of his likeness is unveiled Saturday.

In a ceremony scheduled to follow the second race, McCarron's sculpture will join those of John Longden, Bill Shoemaker and Laffit Pincay Jr. in Santa Anita's east paddock garden area.

McCarron burst upon the national scene as America's leading apprentice in 1974, winning a record 546 races (since broken) and retired on June 23, 2002 as racing's all-time leading money earning jockey with more than $264 million in career earnings.

"Chris McCarron has always been the embodiment of the best that racing has to offer," said George Haines, Santa Anita general manager. "In the face of catastrophic injuries and adversity that few in life have had to face, Chris was always able to maintain his focus and conduct himself in an entirely first-class manner."

Known for his strength and tactical prowess, McCarron was a three-time leading rider at Santa Anita's winter/spring meeting and he won a total of nine Breeders' Cup races, including five in the 1 ΒΌ mile Classic. He won two Kentucky Derbies, first in 1987 with Alysheba and again in 1992 with Go for Gin.

Beyond his tremendous success in the saddle, McCarron will forever be acknowledged as an advocate for his fellow riders. In 1987 he and his wife Judy teamed with actor/comedian Tim Conway to establish the Don MacBeth Memorial Fund for disabled jockeys.

The McCarrons now reside in Lexington Ky., where they have formed the North American Racing Academy, a school for aspiring jockeys, that is due to open later this year.

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