Tommy Zarate Dies

Longtime Texas horseman died November 19.

Q-Racing Journal

Tommy Zarate died November 19.

Thomas “Tommy, TZ” Zarate, 69, died November 19 at Hospice Brazos Valley with his family by his side.


Tommy was born March 7, 1946, in Buckeye, the son of Gergoria and Marie (Osuna) Zarate. He was the youngest of 17 children. Tommy worked in the Quarter Horse racing industry for many years. He worked with a tireless energy motivated with a driven heart doing what he loved and was born to do. In his career he accomplished many records in the world of Quarter Horse racing with the fastest qualifying times and wins, and broke and trained several champion horses.


He managed the early careers of many future superstars. Since 1981, he trained the winners of 381 races from 2,132 starts, with earnings of more than $2.6 million.


Among the horses he saddled were 1991 Graham Farm Futurity (G1) winner Magic Dozen, 1997 Manor Downs Derby (G2) winner First Place Dash and stakes winners Quick Brew, Winners Dash, Cash Coffer, Sir Alibi, Runaway Kate, Racing Streak, Streakin Flair, Vitalized, Go Cup and Champagne Bath. He also helped with the career of world champion Stolis Winner, among many others.

Tommy has left this world setting a legacy of never quitting and running your race until the end. He showed us with faith in God all things are possible.


Funeral service will be held 11 a.m. Saturday, November 21, at Memorial Funeral Chapel in College Station, Texas, with Rev. Will Fountain officiating. Interment will follow at Memorial Cemetery of College Station. Visitation will be from 5:30 – 8 p.m. Friday at the funeral home.


Tommy is preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Marcelino and Rosendo; half-brother, Francisco; and a sister, Paula.


He is survived by his wife of 19 years, Jocelyn (Vasquez) Zarate; children, Audrea (Zarate) Gannaway and Bridget Zarate; four grandchildren, Zachary D Huff, Kaleb B. Drake, Natalie J. Drake and Daniel G. Gannaway; brothers and sisters, Julian Zarate, George Zarate, Joyce Cantu, Alonzo Zarate, Carmel Zarate, Phil Zarate, Margaret Parrado, Hope Villareal, Lupe Zarate, Mary Escobar, Natalie Valadez, Amada Gonzales and Emilio Zarate.


In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Kingdom Ranch Church Building Fund or Hospice Brazos Valley. Condolences may be offered at

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