SINGAPORE- After being held back by a family emergency, top US jockey David Flores will begin his new Kranji stint on Jan 1.
Originally licensed for eight months, from Nov 6 until June 30, Flores, who rode in Singapore for two weeks in July and scored three wins from 21 rides, was all set to leave his Californian base in Los Angeles when his one-year-old son John Lorenzo was suddenly taken ill.
He postponed the trip to give his child the necessary care back home before relocating.
Once his son recovered, he informed the Singapore Turf Club he could commence duties in the new season and booked tickets for himself, his wife Dawn and son on Dec 26.
Not without accepting rides for a final fling at Santa Anita's opening race-meeting on the same day.
As a fitting script, the multiple-Group 1-winning jockey earned himself the perfect send-off after he booted home 17-1 outsider Shakin It Up for top US trainer Bob Baffert in the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes, a 1,400m race he won for the third time.
Big-race success is nothing new to the veteran 45-year-old jockey, who has captured, among others three Breeders' Cup races, three Hollywood Gold Cups, the Arlington Million in the US and the United Arab Emirates Derby and Godolphin Mile, as well as a recent Group 1 race in France, the Prix Morny aboard No Nay Never.
Even after adding another notch to his collection before catching his flight, Flores remained grounded and focused on his next target as he embarked on his new adventure.
"It makes sense and it's the best thing for us right now." he said.
"We'll go for six months and then see where we're at. I start riding on New Year's Day, the opening day.
"I was there in July and loved the experience. We don't have to ride seven days a week and it's a lifestyle that suits me better."
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