From Shetland Ponies To Graded Stakes Winners: Brian, Colby Hernandez On Continuing Family’s Racing Legacy



Colby Hernandez (left) and Brian Hernandez Jr. (right)

Thanks to a successful year for both Brian and Colby, the Hernandez brothers are quickly ascending up the ranks of jockey sibling duos.

Brian Hernandez Jr., 36, began galloping horses at the age of 12, growing up on the backside of Evangeline Downs in Louisiana. He began his career as a professional jockey in 2003 at Delta Downs and began going back and forth between the Louisiana and Kentucky circuits the following year. Brian currently has lifetime earnings of $99,790,140 and has won 2,271 races, as well as an Eclipse Award in 2004 as outstanding apprentice jockey.

Colby Hernandez, 31, followed quickly in his older brother’s footsteps with his first start as a professional jockey coming in 2006 at Evangeline Downs. Colby rode primarily on the Louisiana circuit until 2020 when the pandemic-related track closures prompted him to give the Kentucky circuit a try. He has gone back and forth between the two states ever since. Colby has current lifetime earnings of $51,375,010 and has won 2,334 races.

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Hernandez Brothers Both Win Stakes at Keeneland

Change of Control provided Colby Hernandez with his first Keeneland stakes victory.


When two siblings ride stakes winners at a track on the same card, more often than not it is the dynamic duo of Irad Ortiz Jr. and his brother, Jose—both Eclipse Award-winning jockeys.

But they aren’t the ones. On April 10 at Keeneland, brothers Brian Hernandez Jr. and younger brother, Colby, managed the unique accomplishment. Colby notched his first Keeneland stakes win on Change of Control  in the $100,000 Giant’s Causeway Stakes, a half-hour before Brian recorded his 12th Keeneland stakes triumph when he rode King Fury  to victory in the $200,000 Stonestreet Lexington Stakes (G3).

It wasn’t the first time the two won stakes on a specific card, suspects Brian, the elder of the two.


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OPELOUSAS, LA – Entering the final evening of the Thoroughbred season at Evangeline Downs, the only race for meet-end honors still in doubt was the jockeys’ race. A three-way battle between Colby Hernandez, Tim Thornton and Diego Saenz came to a dramatic conclusion as Hernandez won the penultimate race of the season aboard Tenpins Tempo to clinch the title by two over Saenz, who had three wins on the last night to tighten the race significantly. Saenz was able to pass Thornton for second place in the standings with that hat trick, as Thornton went winless on the evening.

The complete top 10 jockeys’ standings were: Colby Hernandez (95 wins), Diego Saenz (93), Tim Thornton (91), Gerard Melancon (51), Thomas Pompell (37), Carlos Quinones (34), Paulina Ramirez (32), and a three-way tie for eighth with Gerardo Mora, Chris Rosier and Kevin Smith at 26 wins each.

Karl Broberg had his textbook dominant season at Evangeline Downs, winning the trainers’ race with 68 victories from 216 starts for a winning percentage of 31%. Broberg had a total of 138 in-the-money results with 40 seconds and 30 thirds for a top three percentage of 64%. The runner-up in the standings, Ron Faucheux, also had an outstanding season and had a better winning percentage than Broberg of 32%, scoring 36 wins from 113 starts. His in-the-money results also included 29 seconds and 21 thirds, giving Faucheux a top three percentage of 76%.

The complete top 10 trainers’ standings were: Karl Broberg (68 wins), Ron Faucheux (36), Eduardo Ramirez (30), Brett Brinkman (28), Dale White, Sr. (23), Corale Richards (22), a tie for seventh between Sam Breaux and Lee Thomas at 21 wins and a tie for ninth between Sam David, Jr. and Scott Gelner at 20 wins.

Broberg was also part of the leading owners’ standings, as his partnership with Matt Johanson, End Zone Athletics, Inc., won the title handily with 43 wins from 128 starts for a winning percentage of 34%. Owner-trainer Dale White, Sr. was the runner-up in the standings with 14 wins.

The complete top 10 owners’ standings were: End Zone Athletics, Inc. (43 wins), Dale White, Sr. (14), Wayne T. Davis (13), Elite Throoughbred Racing, LLC (12), Red Rose Racing (11), Whispering Oaks Farm, LLC (10), Cynthia Sharp and Corale Richards (9), a tie for eighth between Ming Yan Ng and Norman Stables, LLC at eight wins and a tie for tenth between Brittlyn Stable, Inc. and Sandy Badeaux and Dale White, Sr. at seven wins each.

Live racing at Evangeline Downs will resume with the beginning of the 46-night American Quarter Horse season on Friday, September 27. Post time for the season will be 5:35 pm Central Time. The $1,000,000 LQHBA Louisiana Million will take place on Saturday, December 7 and the $100,000-added Evangeline Downs Futurity and $50,000-added Evangeline Downs Derby will highlight the closing night program on Saturday, December 14.


For more information on racing at Evangeline Downs, visit the track’s website at Evangeline Downs’ Twitter handle is @EVDRacing and the racetrack is also accessible on Facebook at


About Evangeline Downs

Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino & Hotel is owned by Boyd Gaming Corporation, a leading diversified owner and operator of 22 gaming entertainment properties located in Nevada, New Jersey, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana and Mississippi.  Boyd Gaming press releases are available at  Additional news and information can be found at, or



Colby Hernandez with Is Too wins the 2019 Opelousas Stakes at Evangeline Downs. Coady Photography.


Opelousas Stakes
Evangeline Downs, 7-12-19, One mile* (originally scheduled for turf)
Three-year-olds and upwards, fillies and mares, $50,000

Midshipman–Tensas Salt
Breeder: J. Adcock & Montgomery Equine Center (LA)
Owner: Baronne Farms, LLC
Trainer: Edward J. Johnston
Jockey: Colby J. Hernendez

Mariah’s Galaxy
Greeley’s Galaxy–Black Mariah
Breeder: Margie K. Averett (LA)
Owner: Riley Blanchet and Todd Matte
Trainer: Victor Arceneaux
Jockey: Kevin J. Smith

Breeder: Olympia Star Inc (KY)
Owner: Mark Glover
Trainer: Tracey Glover
Jockey: Aubrie Green

OPELOUSAS, LA – Friday night at Evangeline Downs was a stellar night for one of the perennial leading riders at the track, Colby Hernandez. He won four of the nine races on the card, including an impressive stakes score aboard Is Too in the $50,000 Opelousas Stakes. The race had originally been scheduled for one mile on the turf, but rain throughout the week forced it to be transferred to the main track. Is Too finished the mile in 1:39.67 over the fast track.


The longest shot on the board at 27-1, Mi Copa Rebosa, took the early lead and set a solid pace of 24.98 seconds for the quarter-mile and 49.51 for the half. As the field approached the half-mile mark, Is Too advanced through an opening at the rail and assumed the lead. She eventually built a four-length edge as the field entered the stretch. Mariah’s Galaxy closed strongly but was only able to cut the final margin of victory for Is Too to 1-1/4 lengths. Roussalka finished third while the betting favorite, Bermuda Star, never fired and finished fourth in the field of six.


Is Too was sent off at odds of 2-1 and paid $6 to win, $3 to place and $2.80 to show. Mariah’s Galaxy returned $3.80 to place and $3 to show, while Roussalka paid $4.40 to show.


Is Too was bred in Louisiana by J. Adcock and Montgomery Equine Center, is owned by Baronne Farms, LLC. and is trained by Edward Johnston. The 4-year-old filly is by 2008 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner, Midshipman, and is out of the Salt Lake mare, Tensas Salt. She has now won 5-of-13 career starts and the $30,000 first-place purse increases her lifetime earnings to $157,640.


Live racing at Evangeline Downs will resume on Wednesday night with a nine-race program. Post time on Wednesday will be 5:50 pm Central Time.


For more information on the American Quarter Horse season at Evangeline Downs, visit the track’s website at Evangeline Downs’ Twitter handle is @EVDRacing and the racetrack is also accessible on Facebook at


Colby Hernandez on Jock Talk Tonight on HRRN

Every Tuesday at 6:00 PM Eastern, Kristina McManigell presents an in-depth look into the lives and careers of the greatest jockeys in the sport on Jock Talk, presented by Tito’s Handmade Vodka. Listen as she visits with hall of fame riders, young jocks and everyone in between. Join Kristina tonight for a an hour with 2,000 win jockey Colby Hernandez.

A portion of the proceeds from every episode of Jock Talk will be used to benefit the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund.

Jock Talk airs tonight from 6-7 PM Eastern on Sirius 219, XM 201, or at