Wesley Ward Celebrates ‘Humbling’ Milestone Of 2,000 Career Wins

Trainer Wesley Ward, 53, recorded his 2,000th-career win Thursday night at Churchill Downs when Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s Gold for Kitten rallied for a rail-skimming victory in Race 6 under jockey Chris Landeros.

“I was actually moving a bunch of mares and foals from one place to another at my farm in Lexington when it happened,” Ward told the Daily Racing Form. “It’s a great accomplishment, very humbling.”

Ward was born into a racing family, according to the Keeneland media guide. His father, Dennis, is a former jockey who is now a trainer and occasionally saddles horses for his son. His grandfather, Jim Dailey, was a steeplechase rider and later a popular outrider in New York for 29 years.

Ward began riding at age 12, competing at fairs in Washington, Alberta, British Columbia and Montana. On the day he turned 16, the junior in high school began riding at Aqueduct with Lenny Goodman as his agent. Goodman, a friend of Jim Dailey’s, previously handled the books of Steve Cauthen and Declan Murphy. Though he didn’t win any races that day, Ward won five in the next three days.

Recipient of the 1984 Eclipse Award as outstanding apprentice, Ward later rode in Italy, Singapore and Malaysia. He retired in 1989, tired of battling weight. He began training in 1991.

Ward became the first American trainer to saddle a winner at Royal Ascot in 2009 when Strike the Tiger won the Windsor Castle at odds of 33-1. The next day, he sent out Jealous Again to win the Queen Mary (G2).

In total, Ward has sent out 11 winners at the prestigious Royal Ascot meeting: 2013 Norfolk (G2) with No Nay Never; 2014 Windsor Castle with Hootenanny; 2015 Diamond Jubilee (G1) with Undrafted and Queen Mary (G2) with Acapulco; 2016 Queen Mary (G2) with Lady Aurelia; 2017 King’s Stand (G1) with Lady Aurelia and Sandringham (L) with Con Te Partiro; 2018 Norfolk (G2) with Shang Shang Shang; and 2020 Queen Mary with Campanelle.

His training resume also includes four Breeders’ Cup victories: 2014 Juveneile Turf with Hootenanny; 2014 Filly & Mare Turf with Judy the Beauty; 2019 Juvenile Turf Sprint with Four Wheel Drive; and 2020 Juvenile Turf Sprint with Golden Pal.

In 2021, Ward saddled his first Kentucky Derby starter with Like the King, who finished 12th.

Ward’s 2,000 North American wins include 50 graded stakes victories and purse earnings of more than $71.8 million.

The post Wesley Ward Celebrates ‘Humbling’ Milestone Of 2,000 Career Wins appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

DYFD Winter - 300x90

Comments are closed.