Trainer Brad Cox, center, and Godolphin USA president Jimmy Bell, left, celebrate after champion Essential Quality captured the 153rd Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park on June 5, 2021. NYRA photo.

Godolphin, Cox Establish Single-Season Earnings Records

Edited Press Release

Godolphin LLC – the ownership group that campaigned Belmont Stakes (G1) and Travers Stakes (G1) winner Essential Quality along with 14 other North American graded stakes winners – established a single-season record as the leading owner by earnings, according to final statistics released today by Equibase Company LLC, the Thoroughbred industry’s official database for racing information.

Brad Cox established a single-season record as the top earner for trainers. It was the first leading owner and trainer titles, respectively, for Godolphin and Cox. Joel Rosario was the top money-earning jockey, a first for him, after finishing second last year. 

The year-end compilations are distributed annually by Equibase and include results from Thoroughbred racing in North America from January 1, 2021, through December 31, 2021. Expanded North American racing leaders’ lists that include all trainers, jockeys, owners, and horses are available within the statistical section at equibase.com. These lists include the ability to look at leaders in a variety of categories, including age, sex, surface, graded races, foaling year for horses, and the inclusion of designated foreign races, such as the Saudi Cup and Dubai World Cup (G1) races. 

Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner Knicks Go, who won five of his six North American races, led all Thoroughbreds in North American earnings with $5,824,140. In addition to his win in the Classic, Knicks Go won the Pegasus World Cup Invitational Stakes (G1), the Whitney Stakes (G1), and two other graded stakes races. He also finished fourth in the Saudi Cup. 

Completing the list of top 10 horses by North American earnings were Medina Spirit with $3,520,000, Essential Quality with $3,420,000, Yibir (GB) with $2,615,000, Hot Rod Charlie with $2,127,500, Letruska with $1,945,540, Silver State with $1,693,000, Malathaat with $1,563,000, Mandaloun with $1,560,000, and Maxfield with $1,512,550. 

Some of the leading horses also were the top earners from their respective foal crops. The leading earners by foaling year from the past five years were Echo Zulu (by Gun Runner, 2019 foal crop), Essential Quality (by Tapit, 2018 foal crop), Authentic (by Into Mischief, 2017), Knicks Go (by Paynter, 2016), and Vino Rosso(by Curlin, 2015). 

Godolphin – with 84 North American wins from 479 starts – was a dominant force among owners in 2021 with record earnings of $17,403,204, smashing the former single-season earnings record of $12.2 million set in 2013 by Kenneth L. and Sarah K. Ramsey. When including earnings from Dubai World Cup and Saudi Cup days, Godolphin had 88 wins and earnings of $29,398,204, those earnings coming primarily from Dubai World Cup winner Mystic Guide and U.A.E. Derby (G2) winner Rebel’s Romance (IRE)

Completing the list of top 10 owners by North American earnings in 2020 were Klaravich Stables, Inc.,$7,016,654 (72 wins / 294 starts); Juddmonte, $5,899,094 (38/134); Korea Racing Authority, $5,824,140 (5/6); Calumet Farm, $5,415,390 (63/528); End Zone Athletics Inc., $5,076,698 (266/1,248); Three Diamonds Farm, $5,044,008 (52/318); Peter M. Brant, $4,417,444 (31/124); Stonestreet Stables, $4,378,427 (36/127); and Gary Barber, $4,333,024 (91/482).

Cox sent out the winners of 269 races from 358 starters with 1,025 starts in establishing a single-season earnings record of $31,832,345 in 2021, edging the previous record of $31.1 million set in 2019 by Chad Brown. When including earnings from Dubai World Cup and Saudi Cup days, Cox’s earnings for the year totaled $33,332,345. Steven Asmussen, last year’s leading trainer by earnings, finished second with his horses having won 453 races from 640 starters with 2,427 starts for earnings of $31,268,944.

Completing the list of top 10 trainers by North American earnings in 2021 were Brown, $22,213,740 (196 wins / 316 starters / 839 starts); Todd Pletcher, $22,098,436 (204/306/915); Michael Maker, $14,938,517 (214/419/1,340); Mark Casse, $14,881,212 (225/363/1,347); Bob Baffert, $14,646,762 (108/117/341); Bill Mott, $12,410,845 (108/194/616); Christophe Clement, $10,069,223 (116/189/564); and Saffie Joseph Jr., $9,027,406 201/279/875).

Rosario reached the winner’s circle 228 times from 1,083 mounts in 2021 and earned $32,944,478. With earnings from the Dubai World Cup and Saudi Cup days included, Rosario earned $35,421,978. Finishing second was Irad Ortiz, Jr., who was the leading jockey for the past two years, with 336 wins from 1,443 mounts and earnings of $29,274,435.

Rounding out the list of top 10 jockeys by North American earnings in 2021 were Luis Saez, $26,187,754 (293 wins / 1,635 starts); Jose L. Ortiz, $25,000,069 (256/1,372); Flavien Prat, $23,098,013 (245/921); Tyler Gaffalione, $19,232,182 (2,691/423); Florent Geroux, $19,021,642 (185/898); John R. Velazquez, $17,738,203 (119/695); Ricardo Santana Jr., $16,976,612 (164/990); and Manuel Franco, $14,043,066 (184/1,341).