04/15/2016 11:07PM

Hoosier: Tyler Smith makes history

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Linscott Photography
Tyler Smith is feted in the winners' circle following his 2,000th career victory

Driver Tyler Smith made harness racing history at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, April 15 as at age 23 he became the youngest driver ever to reach the 2,000 win mark.  Smith came into Hoosier Park’s 14-race card on Friday with 1,999 career driving victories and needed just one more victory to reach the career milestone and stamp his name in the record books.

He accomplished that feat in his first race of the night, the third race on the card, steering Au D Lox Bluegrass to a 1:53 2/5 romp in a division of The Extreme Velocity Pacing Series. Trained by John Merkel, Au D Lox Bluegrass was able to take advantage of an aggressive front-end trip to record her first win of the season. Owned by Luel Overstreet and John Merkel, Au D Lox Bluegrass has earned $74,631 in her career.

Scott Zeron previously held the record for youngest driver to reach the 2,000 win plateau after he reached the milestone two months before his 24th birthday. Smith turned 23 in January of 2016.

Smith has been making headlines as a driver since the age of 12 when he became the youngest male driver in harness racing history to record a sub-2:00 race, driving Look Lilly to victory in 1:59 1/5 in a matinee at the Delaware County Fairgrounds in his home state of Ohio. He also became the youngest driver to reach 1,000 career wins in the bike, a milestone he still holds and reached at Hoosier Park in 2013.

The Washington Court House, Ohio, native started driving in 2009 and has since surpassed the $15 million mark in purse earnings. He recorded his best season to date in 2014 when he won 412 races and earned over $3.7 million in purse earnings.

--press release (Hoosier)--