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Saratoga and Del Mar 2017

David Lopez Wins First Career Race

Apprentice rider David Lopez, son of Monmouth Park veteran rider Chuck C. Lopez, celebrated the first win of his career Friday afternoon at Monmouth Park by guiding 55-1 longshot I Did It His Way to victory in the day’s fourth race.


“It’s everything I thought it would be and more,” the 21-year-old David Lopez said.  “I’ve been waiting for this since I was a little kid – watching my dad and learning from him.  You never know, but I always hoped it would happen this quickly.”


Despite heavy fog hampering the effectiveness of on-track video cameras and the vision of track announcer Larry Collmus, Lopez appeared to have his mount on the lead throughout the one-mile $10,000 maiden claiming event.


At the wire, Lopez and the 4-year-old son of Mongoose finished two lengths ahead of runner-up Gambaru.


Following the winner’s circle presentation, Lopez was greeted with buckets of ice water from his fellow fourth-race riders before being doused with shaving cream, eggs and even more water back at the jock’s room. 


That, of course, was followed by a hug from dad.


“I couldn’t be prouder of him,” Chuck C. Lopez said.  “He’s paid his dues and waited a long time for this.  I’m just so proud.”


Friday’s fourth race was just the third start of David Lopez’s career who is the latest member of the Lopez family – joining grandfather Carlos Lopez Sr., uncle Carlos Lopez Jr., father Chuck C. Lopez, and brother Erick Lopez – to reach the winner’s circle at Monmouth Park.

             

 

 

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