Once on track to be a physical therapist Victor grad is now racing in the Kentucky Derby

Once on track to be a physical therapist Victor grad is now racing in the Kentucky Derby:For Reylu Gutierrez, 26, being a jockey wasn’t a profession he deliberate on. But now as a competitor in the Kentucky Derby, he’s driving on the biggest stage.

“It hasn’t hit me yet,” Gutierrez stated of creating it to Churchill Downs.

Had it now not been for a proposal from a pal, the 2013 Victor graduate may additionally have taken his workout technology degree from SUNY Cortland and commenced a profession in physical remedy.

“I was born into horse racing, however it wasn’t something I desired to do,” he said in an in advance interview. “In university, I ended up studying abroad and I was searching at my loans. I stated, ‘How am I going to pay this off?’ ”

That June, a possible solution regarded.

“A pal suggested I inspect the horses,” Gutierrez said. After graduating a semester early, he lower back to his Farmington domestic and frolicked at Finger Lakes Gaming and Race Track.

Reylu Gutierrez, jockey

“My father (Luis) and my uncle (retired jockey Jose) put me through the most bodily schooling I’ve ever experienced,” he said. “I figured I’d try it for a few months and all of a sudden, we’re here. This is what I do now, and I love every 2nd of it.”

But he in no way dreamed he could be taking part within the Kentucky Derby.

“Never. I mean, I continually desired to be within the suburbs in Rochester, NY, with a residence in Farmington. But you have to pass spread your wings, and luckily this possibility presented itself.”

Gutierrez, who’s the youngest jockey in this year’s race, will rejoice this career milestone with his circle of relatives who will travel from Rochester to peer the race in man or woman.

“This is for them. They’ve continually been proud of me, very excited to be right here,” he said.

Gutierrez has racked up an outstanding range of wins with 440 first-location finishes throughout his profession. He has also been in some of distinguished races, from the Belmont Stakes to the Breeders Cup World Championships.visit our website.

Love of My Heart ridden by Reylu Gutierrez, left, wins the 7th race at Churchill Downs.

Yet for Gutierrez, the street to the Kentucky Derby got here in a roundabout manner.

“My agent, Jose Sanchez Jr., gave me a hazard to trip (at this stage),” he said, noting that he began with an possibility to trip at a lower stage in Texas.

“We took a step back to take steps forward. We needed to be very successful on small circuits before attending to the huge lights,” he said.

Gutierrez will be using on the Kentucky-bred Barber Road, which he rode within the Arkansas Derby and in the Rebel Stakes, placing 2d and 0.33, respectively

Reylu Gutierrez heads back to the jockeys room after the second race on opening night at Churchill Downs on Saturday, April 30, 2022

While Gutierrez can be the one on the track with the pony, he credits the horse trainers for doing a “extra special process” making ready them for the race.

“Once I experience, they’re prepared to go. My job is to place them within the satisfactory function viable,” he said.

Yet while Gutierrez is focused on making ready for the 148th Run for the Roses, he’s also looking ahead to what happens after the race.Once on track to be a physical therapist Victor grad is now racing in the Kentucky Derby