Gary Lynn Stevens
Gary Lynn Stevens (born March 6, 1963 in Caldwell, Idaho) is an American Thoroughbred horse racing jockey, actor, television personality and sports anchor who works for both HRTV and NBC Sports as a horse racing analyst. Although forced to wear a hip brace for nineteen months due to a degenerative disease of the hip, Perthes syndrome, at age 7, Stevens began working for his horse trainer father, Ron, as a groom at age 8. By the time he was 14, he was riding American Quarter Horses. Stevens dropped out of high school, after an all-star wrestling season, to become a full-time jockey. He began his career in 1979 at Les Bois Park in Boise, Idaho, and in his first start had a winner Thoroughbred. From there he soon became a leading rider in Washington. He then moved down the coast into California, becoming part of the leading competitive jockey groups there. In 1993, Gary Stevens became the youngest jockey to surpass $100 million in earnings. Stevens has been in the winner's circle at the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont Stakes three times, and twice at the Preakness Stakes. He won the Santa Anita Derby a record nine times, and he's won eight Breeders' Cup races, making him the fourth-leading money winner in Breeders' Cup history so far. On November 27, 2005, Stevens announced his retirement. After a jockey's career of 27 years, he started working in January 2006 as a racing analyst with TVG. Also that month he joined NBC Sports. Gary Stevens has won numerous awards including the prestigious George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award in 1996. In 1997, Stevens entered the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame and in 1998, he was voted the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Jockey in the United States. In 1999, he was voted the Mike Venezia Memorial Award for "extraordinary sportsmanship and citizenship". In the 2003 film Seabiscuit, Stevens played jockey George Woolf. In 2011 he became a regular cast member on the HBO television series "Luck" produced by avid horse racing fan and Thoroughbred owner David Milch, starring as an on-the-skids jockey named Ronnie. He returned to the saddle in January of 2013.