Third Time Is a Charm for Chuan's U.S. Riding Career

Sep 21, 2023 Kevin Kerstein,Churchill Downs Communications

Peruvian jockey Martin Chuan has competed fulltime in the U.S. twice but now well into his third stint in North America, he’s ready to stay.

“I enjoyed riding in Peru and was very successful winning many Group I races but I wanted to come to North America to win Grade I races,” Chuan said. “That’s my goal and I’m going to keep working hard to get that goal.”

Chuan, who’s represented by Jake Romans, has started to make headway into some of the biggest barns on the Churchill Downs backside including Brad Cox and Jake’s father, Dale Romans.

Chuan returned to the U.S. in June and has ridden 14 winners from 83 starters. He’s already amassed more than $1 million in purse earnings.

“We’ve had a great start back but I’m going to continue to work hard to keep the momentum going,” said Chuan, who was named on nine horses Friday-Sunday at Churchill Downs. “I’m working hard in the mornings, the afternoons during races and at night going to English classes to become more acclimated to life in the U.S.”

Chuan has ridden four horses at the September Meet and sports a win in a $120,000 maiden special weight aboard Stretch Ride.

Chuan first rode professionally in the U.S. in 2013 when he finished 10th aboard Aroseforgigner at Turfway Park. In 2017, Chuan once again had one mount in the U.S., a sixth-place finish aboard More Than Words in an allowance event at Churchill Downs. One year later, Chuan and Jake Romans teamed together to ride fulltime at Ellis Park but he returned to Peru after the meet. In 2019, Chuan rode at Ellis Park and the September Meet at Churchill Downs before returning to his home country.

“I want to do what’s best for my family,” Chuan said. “I came to America before to try to get my name out there and get to know people around the racetrack. My family is with me now in Kentucky. We moved here from Peru and are here to stay.”

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