ESMERALDA AND FRANCISCO FLORES
-Won the 2004 La Primera Del Ano Derby with So Significant
-Won the Los Alamitos Million Futurity with A Regal Choice in 2003
-Won Vessels Maturity with Five Bar Molly in 2007
Esmeralda and Francisco Flores did not know each other growing up in Michoacan, Mexico but faith brought them together in southern California. "Being from the same city in Mexico was one of the things we had in common when we first met," said Esmeralda, who comes from a family of avocado growers. Esmeralda, a realtor in Orange County, and her husband now share a passion for Quarter Horses. "Watching our horses run is so much fun," she said. "We have a great time and (Los Alamitos Million Futurity winner) A Regal Choice has been incredible for us."
The couple has their son Erik to thank for getting them interested in Quarter Horse racing. "My son would watch the races on television and would always ask us to bring him to Los Alamitos," Francisco said. "I finally decided to bring him to the racetrack and we both fell in love with it right from the start. He was 13 at the time. That was about six years ago." Shortly after that first visit, Francisco and his son paid a visit to the Pacific Coast Quarter Horse Yearling Sale. They walked out of the sale as the owners of a $9,000 yearling named Jazzhi Dotcom. "I found everything about the sport very exciting and fun. My son had already fallen in love with Quarter Horses, so buying a horse seemed like the right thing to do. Some kids pour over baseball or football stats but my son loves studying the Quarter Horse racing stats. He subscribes to several magazines and he can tell you just about everything there is to know about every top Quarter Horse in the country."
In addition to A Regal Choice, the Flores family campaigns La Primera Del Ano Derby winner So Significant, Grade 1 futurity qualifier Special Crown Royal, and multiple winner Shaded In Speed. Next year the family will enter into the Quarter Horse breeding business as part of a corporation that will stand A Regal Choice at Burns Ranch in Menifee, California. "We've been learning about this sport little by little and we are now excited about the prospect of standing A Regal Choice," Francisco Flores added. The couple has four children, daughters Alin and Paolo and sons, Erik and Francisco Jr.