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Aqueduct: Contessa wins 2,000th career race
Gary Contessa became the 89th trainer to win at least 2,000 races when Al’s Rosie rallied ($9.70) along the rail to win Thursday’s seventh race at Aqueduct.
Contessa, 55, won his first race at Monmouth Park in 1985 with Legendary Wealth.
“I can’t believe I won 2,000 races,” Contessa said in the winner’s circle standing alongside his wife Jennifer.
Contessa said he received a call in the summer of 2011 from Rick Lang, the former handicapper for the New York Post, telling him he had more than 1,900 victories. Contessa said he asked Lang, “When did I win my 1,000th? . . . It’s a great milestone. I’m really honored and humbled to win 2,000 races.”
Contessa worked as an assistant to Stan Hough, Jimmy Picou, and Frank Martin before going out on his own in the mid-1980s.
“Frank Martin beat the daylights out of me and made a horse trainer out of me,” Contessa said.
Contessa was the leading trainer on the New York Racing circuit for four consecutive years from 2006-09. In 2007, he won a NYRA record 159 races, breaking the mark of 156 held by Martin.
Contessa’s most prestigious victory came in the Grade 1 Ashland at Keeneland in 1991 with Do It With Style.
It's hard to understand how a guy who has won 2000 races in his career has dropped off the radar the last couple of years. The Contessa barn is colder than a married woman this meet where as in previous Aqueduct winter meets he would have forty winners by now. Did he forget how to get horses ready overnight? And why do people like Winning Move Stable gravitate from Gary Contessa to David Jacobson? Betcha Mr. Contessa doesn't get to 2100 in this decade!
- 1.Posted 06/16/2013 08:05PM
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- 3.Posted 06/15/2013 01:52PM
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- 5.Posted 06/17/2013 04:52PM