Trainer Jerry Hollendorfer became the fourth trainer to reach 6,000 victories Sept. 3 when he teamed with fellow Hall of Fame member Russell Baze in winning the sixth race at Golden Gate Fields in Albany, Calif.
“We did it with Russell; that’s very nice,” Hollendorfer told TVG a short time afterward. “I’m very pleased.”
Baze and Hollendorfer have combined for more than 2,500 victories in their Hall of Fame careers.
Baze brought home 3-5 favorite Just Tappin It in a $4,000 claiming event for fillies and mares. Owned by Tommy Town Thoroughbreds, the 3-year-old gray/roan daughter of Tapit paid $3.40.
Hollendorfer was stuck on 5,998 with a 0-28 streak that started Aug. 21. But he won the opener at Golden Gate Sept. 2 before hitting his milestone victory.
“I’m really happy I got to do it for him,” said Baze. “Jerry’s been awfully good to me. I was beginning to wonder if I could do it for him. He was stuck on 5,998 so long I took five or six swings at it.”
Hollendorfer’s wife and chief assistant, Janet, was simply happy the waiting for 6,000 came to an end.
“I’m just glad that it’s over with,” she said.
The 65-year-old Hollendorfer, who was inducted into racing’s National Hall of Fame last month, trails only Dale Baird (9,445 wins), Jack Van Berg (6,406), and King Leatherbury (6,324) on the all-time win list. His horses have earned almost $124 million.
Saddling his horses at Del Mar on Sept. 3, Hollendorfer had eight chances to hit No. 6,000: three at Golden Gate and five at Del Mar.
“I’d like to keep going as long as I can,” said Hollendorfer, speaking of the future. “I don’t know if I can make 7,000, but I’d like to keep going as long as I’m healthy. We’re very lucky and very fortunate.”