02/26/2017 9:10PM

Birzer collects career win 3,000 at Oaklawn

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Alex Birzer, 43, won his 3,000 Thoroughbred race Sunday at Oaklawn Park.

Jockey Alex Birzer reached a milestone of 3,000 career Thoroughbred wins in North America on Sunday, when he guided Numancia to a half-length victory in the sixth race at Oaklawn Park. He picked up the mount to add to the six horses he was named on Sunday.

Birzer became the 174th rider in North America to hit the milestone, Oaklawn announcer Vic Stauffer told the crowd Sunday.

“This is wonderful,” Birzer, 43, said. “It looked like it might set up this way last fall, and I had it in my mind that it would be great to reach this here. I just love Oaklawn. I love the people here. The patrons are just unreal with the way they treat us. It’s a great racing atmosphere.”

Birzer also thanked the owners and trainers whom he rides for, as well as his agent, Brian Assmann.  

Birzer and Numancia ($9.60) were always prominent when winning the conditioned claiming sprint for fillies and mares Sunday. Numancia is owned by Angela Hall and trained by John Hall.

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Birzer is a native of Kansas who won the first race of his career on June 24, 1992, at River Downs. He is the son of jockey-turned-trainer Gary Birzer. Alex Birzer’s mounts have earned more than $48 million, and include Chanel’s Legacy, a two-time stakes winner at the meet who in her last start captured the $125,000 Martha Washington.

Birzer has won more than 100 stakes races in his career, among his stakes horses American Sugar, Answer to Jordan, Humble Smarty, Kate’s Main Man, and Patton’s Victory. He has won five riding titles at Prairie Meadows, including last year in a tie with Ramon Vazquez. Birzer has four titles at the now-shuttered Woodlands in his native Kansas.

Birzer and his wife, Bonnie, have three children: Jordan, Brett and Colby.