Cesar DeAlba Reaches 1,000-Win Plateau
Jockey Cesar De Alba won his 1,000th Quarter Horse race of his career when he piloted Five Livestock Company’s 2-year-old gelding Stevieb Flashofcash to victory on Saturday at Los Alamitos.
De Alba began his career in 2002 at Los Alamitos by mostly riding Thoroughbreds, and he won 301 Thoroughbred races before he made a full-time switch to Quarter Horses. He's won 970 Quarter Horse races at Los Alamitos alone, including such Grade 1 winners as Moonist, BH Lisas Boy, Time For Jess, Little Talks, Strength In Numbers, and Bon Accord.
“It’s been a long journey, but at the same time it feels like I started riding just a week ago,” De Alba said. “It’s a blessing and I’m definitely grateful to all the horsemen that have given me an opportunity. Eddie Garcia (the all-time leading Quarter Horse jockey in wins at Los Alamitos) is my uncle, and I always wanted to ride Quarter Horses. I had trouble making weight with the Thoroughbreds so I switched over and I think it’s paid off.
“I’ve had a lot of good moments," he added. "I would ride the first few Thoroughbred races on the card and then finish out the night riding Quarter Horses. I’ve been on a lot of good horses, but every victory, every winner’s circle trip is awesome. I try to ride 110 percent each time because the horsemen want that from you and that’s what they deserve. I try every time.”
DeAlba said he considers champion Moonist to be one of the best Quarter Horses he has ridden.
“Moonist was just awesome,” De Alba said. “He made me look good. I didn’t have to do much to him. He was just awesome. I was just very fortunate to ride him at the top of his career.”