Rising star jockey Sofia Vives has begun her second year as an apprentice rider. With eleven career wins and counting, Vives works nonstop to reach the top. The 21-year-old Floridian is currently splitting her time between two tracks: Woodbine and Parx. Vives secured her most recent Woodbine score on April 23 with Catherine Day Phillips trainee Popnfizz.

What are you looking forward to most this season?

“Being a bug rider is probably just the learning aspect of it. I’m trying to learn as much as possible, ride as many as possible and do right by the trainers and the horses.”

What’s your pre-race ritual?

“I always go back over the Daily Racing Form. My agent and I go over every race. So, I go back over the forms and always make sure I pray before putting my helmet on. That’s a big ritual of mine. I also tell all the other riders in the race, ‘Good luck and ride safe.’”

Popnfizz and jockey Sofia Vives winning at Woodbine.

Popnfizz and jockey Sofia Vives winning on the Woodbine Tapeta on April 23, 2023 (Michael Burns Photo)

When you’re flying to Parx, what’s on your playlist?

“Hopefully, the back of my eyelids on that flight, but normally, I like a lot of country music. Morgan Wallen is probably the best out there, but I’ll listen to any country music.”

If this wasn’t your job, what sort of career would you have pursued?

“Nothing else… I have never thought about anything else. This has been my dream since I was a little kid. Riding horses was always what I’ve wanted to do, and I never took a second out of the day to think about what else I would have done.”

What’s your favourite TV show?

“HPItv [laughs]. I watch the races a lot. If we’re talking about a show on Netflix, though, I’ve actually gotten into the show The Night Agent. It’s pretty good.”