Cauthen, Steve

Cauthen, Steve (“the Kid”)

(1960–  ) jockey; born in Covington, Ky. Born into a farming and horse-raising family, he was riding ponies at age two and began to race professionally at age 16. In 1977 he set a new American record by riding 487 winners and earning $6 million in purses. In 1978 he won the Triple Crown—the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness, and the Belmont Stakes—on Affirmed; within a few months he hit a slump and went 110 races without a winner. Somewhat disillusioned with the publicity and pressures that attended him, in 1979 he accepted the invitation of a wealthy British horseowner and went to Britain where he spent the rest of his racing career; he settled in Berkshire County—although he returned to Kentucky each winter—and became highly popular with the British. He won the Epsom Derby (1985, 1987), the Irish Derby (1989), and the French Derby (1989), thereby becoming the only jockey ever to win both the Kentucky Derby and the Epsom Derby. Three times champion jockey of Britain (1984, 1985, 1987), he rode a total of 1,704 winners there. In 1992 he retired as a contract jockey with the stable of Sheik Mohammed of Dubai and moved back to Kentucky with his wife (since 1991).
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.