Deshawn Parker is the most successful black horse jockey in today’s modern derbies with over 4,000 victories. In a sport that is now dominated by Latinos, Parker is the 54th highest-ranking jockey in racing history. Today, only 30 of the approximate 750 members of the national Jockey’s Guild are African American. According to recent stats, 42-year-old Parker has estimated earnings of over $47 million dollars. In 2010, Deshawn Parker became the first black jockey to win the most North American races since James “Soup” Perkins in 1895.
Parker credits his success to the pioneering black jockeys of history like Isaac Murphy, who was the first black sports millionaire in 1884.
Black horse jockeys were originally slaves from the south who were put on horseback by their slave masters. Or, like in Isaac Murphy’s case, the sons of former slaves. Murphy became the first black sports millionaire with big wins in the late 1800s. He carried a high profile and even had a white valet. Murphy was the first racer inducted into the National Racing Hall of Fame.
Thoroughbred jockey James Winkfield, who was the last known African American jockey to win the Kentucky Derby, succeeded Isaac Murphy, but with the introduction of segregation and Jim Crow, the presence of black horse jockeys disappeared after the 1920s. Even Winkfield had to move to Russia to maintain his celebrity status. When he returned to the states to be honored by the Kentucky Derby in 1960, he was refused entry to the celebration because he was black. It wasn’t until the year 2000, with rider Marlon St. Julien that the black jockeys began to resurface in America.
In 2012, Parker was issued the Laffit Pincay Jr. Award from the Jockey’s Guild, which goes to a thoroughbred jockey for outstanding achievement throughout the year.
Parker’s 4,000th win was in 2012 at the Mountaineer Casino Racetrack & Resort. He is the all-time leading jockey of the region.
To learn more about the black jockeys of the past and present, check out the book “Black Maestro” by author Joe Drape.
(Photo: Ethel Riser/paulickreport.com)
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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