04/30/2014 3:57PM

Ortiz brothers first siblings in 30 years to ride in same Derby

Barbara D. Livingston
Siblings Jose Ortiz and Irad Ortiz Jr. will be the first brothers to ride in the same Kentucky Derby since 1984.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – By riding in their first Kentucky Derby together Saturday, Jose and Irad Ortiz Jr. will become the first set of brothers to ride in the same Derby since Eddie and Sam Maple did so in 1984.

Jose Ortiz, 20, will be aboard Samraat, while Irad Ortiz Jr., 21, has the mount on Uncle Sigh in the 140th Derby at Churchill Downs. The brothers are from Puerto Rico, where they would sneak into the Hipodromo Camarero as young boys. Among their idols are fellow countrymen Angel Cordero Jr. and John Velazquez, both Hall of Fame jockeys.

Rick Violette, the trainer of Samraat, is a big fan of both brothers.

“They still live very conservative lifestyles,” Violette said. “They just love to ride. They’re nice kids, and they’ve maintained their balance through everything, which doesn’t always happen.”

Other brother combinations to ride in the Derby include Chris and Gregg McCarron in 1976 and Angel and Milo Valenzuela in 1960.