Trainer Mel Stute picked up the 2,000th victory of his career when 25-1 shot Score for Fun went gate-to-wire while defeating six other 2-year-old maiden claimers in the first race at Hollywood Park Dec. 11.
Ridden by Edwin Maldonado-Alicea, Score For Fun prevailed by 5 3/4 lengths. The Ndw Mexico-bred Score Quick gelding is owned and was bred by Stute’s wife, Annabelle.
A native of Fort Wayne, Ind., Mel Stute, 83, saddled his first winner (Egg Nog) in 1947 at Portland Meadows.
Stute is best known for winning the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) and Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) with Snow Chief in 1986.
He also owns two Breeders’ Cup victories: Brave Raj (1986 Juvenile Fillies at Santa Anita) and Very Subtle (1987 Sprint at Hollywood Park).
Both Snow Chief and Brave Raj won Eclipse Awards in 1986. Snow Chief was champion 3-year-old and Brave Raj was champion 2-year-old filly.