Thinking of his wife and seven children, Jose Santos decided to play it safe for a change.
Six months after breaking his back in a spill at Aqueduct, the jockey who rode Funny Cide to victory in the 2003 Kentucky Derby and Preakness called it a career.
"I am going to retire because my back is in real bad shape right now," Santos, 46, said Monday at a news conference. "With time, definitely it's going to get better. But my doctor advised me it's not a good idea to come back. If I have another spill, I'll probably not be able to walk again."
Santos' retirement comes a week before the popular rider is inducted into racing's Hall of Fame.
Rags to Riches, the Belmont Stakes-winning filly, was declared fit and ready to resume training, aiming for a possible start at the Alabama Stakes Aug. 18 at Saratoga. Also at Saratoga, Oak Plantation's Most Distinguished won the $150,000 Amsterdam Stakes for 3-year-olds by 11/2 lengths.