LEXINGTON, Ky. (Tuesday, July 14, 2015) – Fan voting for The 2015 ESPYS in two key categories with nominees from Thoroughbred racing – “Best Championship Performance” with Triple Crown winner American Pharoah and “Best Jockey” with Javier Castellano, Victor Espinoza and Joel Rosario – closes at the beginning of the show’s live broadcast, Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET. Fans are encouraged to vote online at ESPYS.com.
ESPN’s The ESPYS gathers top celebrities from sports and entertainment to commemorate the past year in sports by recognizing major sports achievements, reliving unforgettable moments and saluting the leading performers and performances. The 2015 ESPYS will recognize both sport-specific achievements, such as “Best Jockey” and “Best MLB Player,” and best-in-sport winners, such as “Best Team” or “Best Female Athlete,” that pit nominees from different sports against each other.
American Pharoah is the first horse ever to be nominated in the “Best Championship Performance” category. He is up against a trio of top human athletes: MLB World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner, Women’s College World Series MVP Lauren Haeger and NBA Finals leading-scorer LeBron James.
Julie Krone remains the only horse racing figure to have won a best-in-sport award, having been voted “Best Female Athlete” at the inaugural ESPYS in 1994.
The past winners of the “Best Jockey” award are: Mike Smith (1994), Chris McCarron (1995), Jerry Bailey (1996), Bailey (1997), Gary Stevens (1998), Kent Desormeaux (1999), Chris Antley (2000), Desormeaux (2001), Victor Espinoza (2002), Jose Santos (2003), Stewart Elliot (2004), Jeremy Rose (2005), Edgar Prado (2006), Calvin Borel (2007), Desormeaux (2008), Borel (2009), Borel (2010), John Velazquez (2011), Mario Gutierrez (2012), Joel Rosario (2013) and Espinoza (2014).
About the NTRA
The NTRA is a broad-based coalition of more than 100 horse racing interests and thousands of individual stakeholders consisting of horseplayers, racetrack operators, owners, breeders, trainers and affiliated horse racing associations, charged with increasing the popularity, welfare and integrity of Thoroughbred racing through consensus-based leadership, legislative advocacy, safety and integrity initiatives, fan engagement and corporate partner development. The NTRA owns and manages the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance; NTRA.com; the NTRA Top Thoroughbred and NTRA Top 3-Year-Old weekly media polls; the Eclipse Awards; the National Handicapping Championship; NTRA Advantage, a corporate partner sales and sponsorship program; and HORSE PAC, a federal political action committee. The NTRA has offices in Lexington, Ky., and New York City. NTRA press releases appear on NTRA.com, Twitter (@ntra) and Facebook (facebook.com/1NTRA).