Joe Rocco
Jockey Bios

Joe Rocco Jr.

Born: July 19, 1982 in Hollywood, Fla.

Record at Keeneland

Total Wins: 49

Stakes Wins: 3

Career Firsts

First Grade 1 Win: 2013 Ogden Phipps Handicap at Belmont Park on Tiz Miz Sue

First Stakes Win: 2003 Legal Lights Stakes at Delaware Park on House Party

First Graded Stakes Win: 2012 Azeri Stakes (G3) at Oaklawn Park on Tiz Miz Sue

First Career Win: Feb. 2, 1999, at Tampa Bay Downs on Rainbow's Raja

Starters in the Toyota Blue Grass





So Lonesome



Channel Isle


At Keeneland

Rode Don’t Tell Sophia to win the 2014 Juddmonte Spinster (G1) during the Fall Meet.

Won 11 races during the 2013 Fall Meet to tie for second in the standings.

First Keeneland win came during the 2012 Fall Meet.

First Keeneland stakes win was the 2013 Giant’s Causeway on Sweet Cassiopeia.


North American career earnings exceed $48 million with 1,418 wins through Jan. 22, 2019.

Won two stakes in neighboring states on July 18, 2015: Indiana General Assembly Distaff at Indiana Grand with Antonia Autumn and Don Bernhardt at Ellis Park in Kentucky with Bagg O'Day.

Click here for his Equibase career record.


Joe’s father, Joe Rocco, rode for 34 years, winning 3,714 races. He inspired his son to follow in his career path. “I always wanted to be just like him,” the younger Rocco told Daily Racing Form in 2011. “I learned everything about being a jockey and being a man from him. Without him, I wouldn’t be where I am today. What I respect most about my dad is that so many people on the race track like him and respect him. He treats grooms, hot walkers, exercise riders and everyone the same way you would want to be treated. Some jockeys have big egos and get big heads, but he never acts like he’s better than anyone else. I am very proud to be his son.”

Joe Jr. worked on his family’s farm in New Jersey when he was growing up. His grandfather, Baden Hughes, and his mother, Debora, both trained horses, and they owned a few broodmares. When Joe was in the third grade, his family moved to Maryland. He began galloping and rubbing horses as a teenager for Sam Cronk.

Joe’s wife, Jamie, is the daughter of trainer Lonnie Arterburn.