High School Student Wins First Race as Jockey

Brandon Minnock spent the day at Oldham County High School in La Grange, Ky., Sept. 7. His mother, Diane, then drove him to Turfway Park, where the 16-year-old won his first career race as a jockey on opening night at the Northern Kentucky track.

Minnock broke his maiden aboard Tres Copy, who is owned by Doro J. Stable and trained by his father, Wayne, on a night when Turfway also broke its maiden with its new Polytrack racing surface.

Wayne Minnock, a former jockey, is based at High Pointe Farm near La Grange. The training facility has a covered Polytrack surface.

"It was a great win, and I didn't think it would be that easy," said Brandon Minnock, who piloted Tres Copy to the lead on the far turn in the six-furlong maiden-claiming event for 2-year-old fillies. She opened up and won in hand.

"Dad talked to me in the paddock before the race, and I just followed his instructions," Minnock said.

Minnock gave his parents a present of sorts--Sept. 7 was their 20th wedding anniversary.

"The nerves have not subsided," Diane Minnock said after the race. "Watching him do something like this was phenomenal."

Brandon Minnock had only three other pari-mutuel starts--two at Great Lakes Downs in Michigan and one at River Downs. He plans to ride at Turfway during the winter meet, though his mom said school would come first.