Joel Rosario from Dominican Republic wins at Belmont Stakes

Joel Rosario & Tonalist - NYRA
More than 20 million viewers tuned in on Sunday June 8, 2014, to watch California Chrome's shot at the Triple Crown at Belmont Stakes. It was the second largest audience on record, setting an all-time NYRA records of $19,105,877 on-track handle, and all-sources handle of $150,249,399.

But it was Tonalist, ridden by Joel Rosario, a native of the Dominican Republic, that took the win by a head.

Joel Rosario was born January 14, 1985, in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

He grew up on a farm outside of Santo Domingo and decided to be a jockey after attending the races when he was 13. After six months in jockey school, he turned pro at the age of 14. Rosario was the leading rider in the Dominican Republic four times before deciding to test his skills in California. He came to the U.S. in 2006 and rode in Northern California for much of 2007. Rosaria moved to Southern California late in 2007 and by early 2008 was riding stakes horses for major trainers. He moved into the upper echelon in 2009 when he finished fifth in earnings with $13 million. Rosario climbed to third place in 2010. He won his third-consecutive Del Mar and Hollywood Park titles and his first Santa Anita crown in 2011. 

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