Kazushi Kimura won the 2018 Sovereign Award as Canada’s outstanding apprentice jockey. Woodbine’s third-leading rider in 2019, the Japan native, won 117 races and amassed $3.7 million in purse earnings before he graduated from the apprentice ranks.
Kimura added to his honors in 2019 by winning the Eclipse Award as an Outstanding Apprentice Jockey.
Born in Hokkaido, Japan, the then 19-year-old Kimura joined the Woodbine jockey colony as an apprentice in 2018 and has quickly made an indelible impression.
Kimura finished his first Woodbine campaign sixth in the standings with 89 wins, and his mounts totaled more than $2.3 million in earnings. His first victory came aboard 70-1 longshot Tornado Cat, and his first stakes win came aboard Speedy Soul in the Muskoka.
Kimura, the Eclipse Award winner as North America’s outstanding apprentice, also won the Sovereign Award equivalent in 2018 and 2019.
His Woodbine successes last year included Gretzky the Great (Grade 1 Summer Stakes) and Lady Grace (Grade 2 Royal North).
Another local highlight was his second-place finish aboard Magnetic Charm, owned by Queen Elizabeth II, in the 2019 Canadian Stakes. He has spent time riding in Saudi Arabia and Florida during the past two off-seasons.