Brian Hernandez, Jr.
Brian Joseph Hernandez, Jr. was born Nov. 3, 1985 in Lafayette, LA. He began riding professionally in 2003 and got his first win on Nov. 29 at Delta Downs.
B.J.’s father, Brian Hernandez Sr., was a jockey, and his brother Colby Hernandez and his sister Courtney Hernandez also ride. Brian, or “B.J.”, began galloping horses for trainer Dale Angelle at age 12 and began his riding career at Delta Downs in November 2003, exercising horses in the mornings before high school classes and riding at night. After graduating from high school in May 2004, he headed to Churchill Downs, where he rode for a few weeks before returning to Louisiana and capturing his first riding title at Evangeline Downs.
In 2004, Brian Hernandez, Jr. was voted the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Apprentice Jockey. In 2009 he rode Rachel Alexandra to two wins. On November 3, 2012, his 27th birthday, he won the most important race of his career aboard Fort Larned, in the $5 Mil Breeders' Cup Classic at Santa Anita.