Santa Anita Press Release
Agent Tony Matos, adept at developing apprentice riders into Eclipse Award winners, hopes his magic touch continues when he brings in 18-year-old Jean Carlos Diaz Jr. from his native Puerto Rico to join Santa Anita’s ever-competitive jockey colony.
Diaz, who carries a 10-pound weight allowance and tacks 106 pounds, is the son of veteran jockey Juan Carlos Diaz, Puerto Rico’s all-time leader in stakes victories and its champion rider the past 16 years. He began his career in 2000 and has compiled 4,772 victories with purse earnings of more than $40 million.
“I’m really excited to have young Diaz,” said Matos, who expects him to arrive at Santa Anita on Feb. 4 with his father, and to begin riding at The Great Race Place Feb. 7 with publication of the latest condition book.
Diaz is a graduate of Puerto Rico’s Escuela Vocacional Hipica which produced the sensational Ortiz brothers, Irad Jr. and Jose, in addition to fellow Puerto Rican Evin Roman, the 2017 Eclipse Award winner as outstanding apprentice rider, represented by Matos.