Simulcast players nationwide as well as those in attendance at The Fair Grounds, Ellis Park and Indiana Grand will no longer be able to root home veteran jockey Francisco “Cisco” Torres who announced last week that he is retiring from the saddle to pursue another career in horse racing, perhaps as an agent.
The impetus for the popular jockey’s retirement came Nov. 23th after Torres' return from fractured and dislocated cervical vertebrae and a fractured tailbone, when his Thanksgiving Day Handicap mount at the Fair Grounds suffered a catastrophic leg fracture in mid-stretch. Torres, 48, was able to pull the horse up, but came off body sore, but able to ride the rest of the long holiday weekend.
Torres, who has four children and four grandchildren, was the leading rider at Ellis Park in 1997. His 3,194 career victories include two editions of the grade 3 Gardenia Handicap (now known as the Groupie Doll) at Ellis Park, with Lines of Beauty in 1999 and in 1992 with Bungalow.
The veteran reinsman was usually well fancied by horseplayers for his consistently stylish, hard trying riding efforts whenever he was in the irons.