Jack Van Berg

Jack Van Berg

Anne M. Eberhardt

Van Berg to Race at Thistledown

Hall of Fame trainer Jack Van Berg will have 16 stalls at the 2010 Thistledown meet.

Hall of Fame horseman Jack Van Berg will be stabling horses at Thistledown when the track’s 2010 Thoroughbred season beings April 23.

Van Berg, second winningest trainer in North American history with 6,395 victories and the trainer of 1988 horse of the year Alysheba, confirmed March 16 that he will be stabling and racing at the North Randall oval for owner Steve Belford.

“He’s got a helluva set of young horses," said Van Berg in a statement. "I’ll probably compliment that with some of my California horses and others that I hope to claim in Kentucky.”

Van Berg, who will have 16 stalls at Thistledown, agreed to train for Belford after visiting Belford’s Lake View Training Center in Mt. Gilead, Ohio.

Belford said Van Berg sent Jose Corales, one of his assistant trainers, to prepare the Belford horses for the upcoming season.

“Jose says they’re coming around,” said Van Berg. “I’m looking forward to starting the season.”

Van Berg, 73, is a native of Columbus, Neb. He held the record for most wins in a single year (496) for 28 years until that record was broken by Steve Asmussen (555 wins) in 2004. Asmussen set the record again in 2009 with 650 wins. Van Berg became the first trainer in history to win 5,000 races in 1987.