Songbird and Edgar Rodriguez

A brief interview in Spanish with Songbird’s rider Edgar Rodriguez (Spanish & English version)

Edgar (2)

Edgar with Songbird Wednesday

Edgar Rodriguez, a 29-year-old native of Mexico, began working for Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer in southern California six years ago. Now he works as a rider and groom to the amazing Songbird, champion 2-year-old filly of 2015 and winner of the July 24 Coaching Club American Oaks at Saratoga Race Course. Today she goes to post for the Grade 1 Alabama Stakes.

I caught up with Edgar on the Wednesday afternoon before the Alabama while Songbird grazed outside her barn on the backside of Saratoga. A quiet man who doesn’t waste words, Edgar did not have much to say, but his facial expressions as he spoke and the way he interacts with Songbird speaks volumes that I can’t possibly describe through a Q & A. In a nutshell, it’s pretty clear that he adores her.

  • Cómo es para ti trabajar con  Songbird? What is it like for you to work with Songbird?

Bueno, es algo especial, ella es buena yegua. (It’s something special, she’s a great filly) 

  • Cómo describes su personalidad? How would you describe her personality?

Es muy mansita, muy amable. (She’s very gentle, very kind)

  • Cómo es ella para montar en las mañanas? What is she like to ride in the mornings?

Va bien, es muy profesionál. Hace bien todo, siempre trabaja bien. (She goes well, she’s very professional. She does everything well, she always works well)

  • Cómo empezaste a trabajar con caballos? How did you begin working with horses?

Desde niño siempre he trabajado con los caballos. Tenemos allá en Mexico, con mi familia. Tengo un tio que entrena caballos allá, Quarter Horses. Yo montaba Quarter Horses. (Since I was a kid I’ve always worked with horses. My family in Mexico has horses. I have an uncle who trains horses there, Quarter Horses. I used to ride Quarter Horses)  

  • Qué te gustas más, los Quarter Horses o Thoroughbreds? What do you like more, Quarter Horses or Thoroughbreds?

Thoroughbreds. No sé (porque), ya me acostumbré (Thoroughbreds, I don’t know why, I became accustomed to them) 

  • En qué hipódromo empezaste a trabajar cuando llegaste a los Estados Unidos? What track did you begin working at when you arrived in the United States?

Golden Gate (Golden Gate Fields in Berkeley, California) 

  • Cuando empezaste a trabajar con Songbird? When did you begin working with Songbird?

Desde que tenía dos años, cuando llegó a Santa Anita (From when she was a two-year-old when she arrived at Santa Anita racetrack)

  • Qué fué tu impresión primero de ella? What was your first impression of her?

De primero no pensé que va a salir buena. Pues, al principio no, pero cuando empezó a trabajar, sí, se miraba que sí iba a correr. (In the beginning I didn’t think she would turn out so good. But when she began working I knew she was going to run)

  • Qué piensas sobre el Alabama? What do you think about the Alabama Stakes?

Yo pienso que vamos con chance. Creo que vamos a ganar. (I think we’re going in with a chance. I think we’re going to win) 

  • Cómo fue antes y después del Coaching Club Oaks con la gente que venía a verla? What was it like before and after the Coaching Club American Oaks when people came to see her?

Antes de la carrera sigan mucha gente observándola, pero después más tranquilo, no había mucha gente. (Before the race many people came to see her, but after it what quiet, there weren’t so many people)

  • Crees que ella es la mejora caballo que has trabajado con? Do you think she’s the best horse you’ve ever worked with?

Si (Yes)

 

(Top photo: Edgar was leading Songbird back into the barn after walking and grazing Wednesday. She decided she didn’t want to go back in. Songbird does Songbird’s thing)

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