Jose Santos is the only jockey in history to win the same Kentucky Derby twice, once on the track and once again in people’s minds. A week after he captured the 2003 Kentucky Derby on Funny Cide, Jose was falsely accused by the Miami Herald of cheating to win the race with a buzzer. The charges were baseless, and Jose was immediately cleared two days after the story, but he and his family suffered in the interim. And the cloud over that Derby victory would remain unless Funny Cide won the Preakness Stakes, the second leg of the Triple Crown. Minutes before the start of the Preakness, Jose’s wife Rita saw Jose Jr., crying. She asked him why, and he told her, “Because he had to prove something today. He has to prove he didn’t do it.” Jose and Funny Cide won the Preakness by nearly 10 lengths and Jose continued his remarkable Hall of Fame career before being forced into retirement after a gruesome accident on the track. Eclipse Award winning author Bill Heller captures it all: Jose’s rise from poverty and an abusive father in Chile; his cocaine addiction in Colombia; his arrival in the United States unable to speak a word of English and his meteoric rise to become one of the greatest jockeys in the world. Heller, whose 21 previous books include biographies of Hall of Fame jockeys Ron Turcotte and Randy Romero and harness racing legend Bill Haughton, details how Jose led North American jockeys in earnings four consecutive years; ended Hall of Fame Jockey Angel Cordero Jr’s string of 11 consecutive Saratoga riding titles; won the treasured Eclipse Award; survived his two troubled marriages; and dealt with the heartbreak of his daughter’s conviction and prison term for DWI. The book includes Jose’s jockey record and a list of every single one of his hundreds of stakes victories in North America.
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"Above It All weaves an authoritative tale of the man who came to the United States as an unknown and wound up in horse racing's Hall of Fame."
-Claire Novak Espn.com