06/17/2001 11:00PM

Baze hits fourth on victory list


SAN MATEO, Calif. - Jockey Russell Baze won two races on Sunday, closing day of the 2001 Bay Meadows spring meeting, to wrap up his 25th Bay Meadows title by a 95-89 margin over Jason Lumpkins.

The victories put Baze in fourth place on the all-time victory list for jockeys, with 7,397 winners, compared with 7,396 for David Gall, who is retired. Baze trails only Laffit Pincay Jr. (9,157 through Saturday), Bill Shoemaker (8,833) and Pat Day (8,025). Pincay and Day are still active.

Baze maintained his record of having won the title at every Bay Meadows and Golden Gate meeting at which he has participated since 1981, but it was tougher than usual. Only twice before has he won with a smaller margin.

The mutuel handle for the 56-day meeting was $278,554,066 for an average daily handle of $4,974,180. Average daily ontrack attendance was 3,698.

Compared with last year's Golden Gate meeting, held during the same time on the calendar, ontrack attendance was up 21 percent, while Golden Gate handled 28 percent less as a satellite site compared with Bay Meadows. Last year, Golden Gate had an average handle of $4,329,725.

Baze, who trailed Lumpkins by six winners with about three weeks left in the meeting, admitted he was "concentrating too much on it" at one point. "I went back to just riding my race," he said.

Baze rode far more favorites than Lumpkins, partly because fans often overbet Baze's horses, but anyone who put $2 to win on every horse Lumpkins rode showed a $59 profit. A $2 bet on every Baze runner netted an $88 loss. Baze rode 162 favorites, winning with 60 of them, while Lumpkins rode only 77 favorites and won with 33. Lumpkins rode 10 more total mounts, 343 to 333.

Lumpkins was leading stakes rider with six wins compared with only one for Baze, but Baze nipped Lumpkins in total purse money won, $1,699,794 to $1,666,727.

Like Baze, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer continued his Bay Area dominance, winning 48 races to 19 for second-place Art Sherman. Hollendorfer has now won 22 straight Bay Meadows training titles and 21 in a row at Golden Gate Fields.