ANTONIO AND SALVADOR FLORES
Trainer Jose Flores is one of the leading trainers in the nation, averaging 90 wins each of the past two years. The trainer will be the first to credit his father, Antonio Flores, and his uncle Salvador Flores for his success on the racetrack. "They're the ones that gave the opportunity to be part of this business," he said. While Antonio, who at 53 is the oldest of five brothers, and Salvador, 50, have been involved in Quarter Horse racing at Los Alamitos for more than 10 years, their love affair with horse racing actually as kids growing up in Poncitlan, Jalisco in Mexico. "My dad was a cattle rancher but he always had at least one racehorse all the time." Salvador explained. "Everyone in our town loved the horses. I was even a jockey but I grew out of that profession pretty quickly," said the corpulent man with a smile. "Horse racing is in our blood."
Once in the United States, the brothers claimed their first horses with trainer Paul Jones. Soon, they were finding great bargains with regularity. "We've always had fun with claimers," Salvador said. "One of our first winners was Cassadys Second Look. Then we found Cash Your Tickets, who went from being a $5,000 claimer to becoming our first allowance horse." Good things were still to come for the Flores & Flores Partnership. Their younger brother Jose Arturo Flores acquired IB Quick, handed the keys over to Antonio's son, the then second-year trainer Jose Flores, and the result was the title of 1996 champion aged gelding title for the winner of the Vessels Maturity. Antonio and Salvador would later campaign multiple distance winner Boldandthebeautiful and hard knocking 'iron horses' like Cool Brown Dasher and Im Taking Over. "Those horses became the foundation of our racing operation," Salvador continued. "Cool Brown Dasher took real good care of us. He made over $125,000 in his career, while Im Taking Over has raked over $75,000. That money helped buy a small ranch in Norco. My brother Antonio goes to the ranch about three days out of the week. I spend my Sundays at the ranch after working the other six days of the week."
Since 1974, Antonio and Salvador have been partners in a successful landscaping business in Pasadena. "My brother and I have always done things together," Salvador said. "A lot of people think that we are twins. That's fine with me because we've been best friends our entire life. We've always worked well together and we've had fun together with our horses. Jose has done really well training the horses and we are still looking for a champion. We now have about 15 horses between the two of us and a couple of more babies that are coming along." The Flores family still operates their father's ranch in Mexico. "One of our younger brothers takes care of it and we now keep about 150 head of cattle. It is not a big operation but we do want to keep going what my father started."