Veteran jockey Elvis Trujillo returned to action at Gulfstream Park Monday for the first time since the 2013-2014 Championship Meet.
“It's my town; it's my home; I'm happy to be back,” said Trujillo, who finished out of the money aboard longshot Set on Salsa in Monday's 11th race and his 2015 riding debut.
A mainstay on the East Coast for many years, the 32-year-old journeyman ventured to the West Coast in the spring of 2014, returning to the circuit where he scored his first U.S. win at Hollywood Park in 2001.
“I wanted to try California again. Everything was good; the trainers were good to me,” Trujillo said, “but I wanted to come back home.”
After winning 32 races during the 2013-2014 meet at Gulfstream, Trujillo enjoyed immediate success in Southern California, finishing eighth in the Santa Anita standings with 19 wins from 106 mounts, including a Grade1 score aboard Parranda in the Royal Heroine. The Panama City, Panama native finished in the Top 5 at Los Alamitos and Del Mar before finishing tied for sixth with 27 victories during the 2014-2015 winter/spring meet at Santa Anita. Trujillo rode Jerry Hollendorfer-trained Sam's Sister for Grade 1 victories in the La Brea and Santa Margarita.
“I won a lot of races and big stakes, but I wanted to come home. My wife and my kids are happy to be here,” said the father of three, who ventured east to ride in New York and New Jersey last summer. “I'm going to stay here the rest of my career.”
Trujillo, who won back-to-back Monmouth Park titles in 2011 and 2012, has ridden 2,022 winners during his career.
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