Rusell followed in his father's footsteps in becoming a jockey.
His father, Dean, was a jockey who rode in England, South Africa and Germany.
Russell was born in Louisiana but raised in Newmarket, England. After attending a racing school in England and having a dozen mounts, including his first career win in July 2005 at Catterick, England, Russell came to the U.S. under the tutelage of famed trainer Michael Dickinson at Tapeta Farm in Maryland.
In 2011, he topped the riding standings at the major Maryland tracks with 126 winners, winning all three meets. He also won the riding title at Colonial Downs and set a new career mark in wins (195).