The Woolf Award honors riders whose careers and personal character earn esteem for the individual and the sport of Thoroughbred horse racing.
Dominguez, a 35-year-old native of Venezuela, outran fellow finalists Corey Lanerie, Martin Pedroza, DeShawn Parker and (Gary’s older brother) Scott Stevens to win one of racing’s most coveted awards.
America’s leading jockey by number of wins in 2001 and 2003, Dominguez has won back-to-back Eclipse Awards as North America’s champion jockey in 2010 and 2011. In addition to these honors, Dominguez won the Isaac Murphy Award in 2004 for having the highest win percentage among American-based riders.
Dominguez has two Breeders’ Cup wins to his credit, winning the 2004 Breeders’ Cup Turf with Better Talk Now and most recently, the 2011 Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile this past November at Churchill Downs with Hansen.
Born Nov. 24, 1976 in Caracas, Venezuela, Dominguez began riding at Hialeah Park in Florida in 1996. He has become a dominant force in New York, with 13 NYRA riding titles to his credit, dating back to 2007-08.
The Woolf Award was created to honor and memorialize the legendary jockey George “The Iceman” Woolf, who was regarded as one of the greatest big money riders of his era and who died following a spill on Santa Anita’s Club House turn on Jan. 3, 1946. The Woolf trophy is a replica of the full-size statue of the late jockey which adorns Santa Anita’s Paddock Gardens area.
Dominguez resides in New York with his wife Sharon and son Alexander.
First presented by Santa Anita in 1950, the Woolf Award was won last year by Garrett Gomez.