05/05/2013 7:49AM

Jockey T.D. Houghton collects 5,000th victory at Thistledown

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Jeff Zamaiko Photography
Jockey T.D. Houghton is honored in the winner's circle at Thistledown after winning his 5,000th career race.

Jockey T.D. Houghton will always remember the day Orb won the Kentucky Derby. Some five hours before Orb rallied in the mud to win the 139th Derby at Churchill Downs, Houghton collected his 5,000th career victory at Thistledown.

Houghton reached the milestone when he rode the 7-year-old gelding Mambo Galliano ($3.20) to a 6 ½-length victory in a $4,000 claiming race with his first mount on Thistledown’s card in race 2. He added victory number 5,001 with Storm Love ($6.40) in the first race on Saturday night’s program at Mountaineer Racetrack.

In joining Calvin Borel as jockeys to hit 5,000 this season, Houghton, 43, ranks 27th on the all-time list.  Just ahead of him is Borel at 5,012.

Houghton earned his 4,999th lifetime victory on Wednesday at Thistledown, and then went 0 for 5 Friday night at Mountaineer.

Houghton was a long-time dominant rider in Michigan, first at Detroit Race Course and later Great Lakes Downs and Pinnacle. When all of Michigan’s tracks closed, he rode at Tampa Bay Downs and Hawthorne.

Twice, Houghton’s long career was in jeopardy. Houghton sustained a brain injury during a spill at Great Lakes Downs in 2002. It took a year of therapy before he was able to resume riding.

In 2006, Houghton was among seven riders banned at Tampa following allegations of race fixing. Houghton has maintained his innocence and although never charged or indicted, he remains barred at Tampa and ineligible to obtain a license in Kentucky. He has ridden regularly at Mountaineer since 2009.

BS Responder More than 1 year ago
Larry Snider was a great jockey. Knew his mother in Toledo Ohio. Nice people. About 45 years ago. Went to DRC many a time to see him.
Stephen Stankiewicz More than 1 year ago
No person deserves a brain injury or any othe injuries in their future just because someone anonymous has an ax to grind. Anyone can be anonymous and it just makes your talk cheap!
JacquelineJ More than 1 year ago
Terry never cheated in his entire racing career and doesn't even bet on races. These idiots don't know what the hell they're talking about. If there had been any violation -they would have pressed charges.
Stephen Stankiewicz More than 1 year ago
Jacqueline J You stated how you feel and I agree with you that if it was any thing substantial and that could be proven charges would have been pressed. Nice to have someone take a stand and say it like it is!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Why are we celebrating a cheater? Although never indicted, where there is smoke, there is fire. He and several others were doing something shady at Tam. The industry wanted to quell the story by not giving detail of how rampant this race fixing was. Horseplayers put a lot of time and money in this game, only to get cheated by jockeys? TD, you deserved the brain injury and any other injuries in your future!
Chelsea Curran More than 1 year ago
No one should ever wish that or say they are glad something terrible like that happen to anyone
Mike B More than 1 year ago
Hats off to a great minor-league jock
Stephen Stankiewicz More than 1 year ago
Mike you said it well! Great to see someone with appreciation of the minor league jocks that risk life and limb each and every time they get up on a race horse!
jason More than 1 year ago
dirty, dirty, dirty. good jockey that used his talents to cheat small time bush track races once or twice a day for many years. congrats, TD., you chose a long road to oblivion and deserve everything ahead.
Bruce Baudoux More than 1 year ago
Please send a copy of the win picture to the management at Tampa Bay Dump !
Stephen Stankiewicz More than 1 year ago
Bruce can you fill me in on the Tampa Bay Dump! I could not make the connection and if it is something that I am missing than I would like to know if you would please?
Charles Levy More than 1 year ago
You can fix races there cheat etc !! Tampa doesn't care !!!
Stephen Stankiewicz More than 1 year ago
Congratulations on winning your 5,000 race. This is why I have the greatest respect for jockeys imagine how many times the jockeys ride in a race and imagine how many times they are in harms way. Remember this the Hall Of Fame is not just the big races and the national stage with purse money won. Don't the voters understand these accomplishments! This is no small accomplishment!
morton erskine More than 1 year ago
Well said! Could not agree more!
Stephen Stankiewicz More than 1 year ago
What is disappointing to me is that everything is judged by the big stage! New Englands greatest jockey Carl Gambardella retired with over 6,349 wins blue collar all the way! Not in the Hall Of fame is a shame! Larry Snyder over 6,000 wins retired years ago and these guy are getting older! What in the hell are we waiting for! Yes, these guys are something special it is just that the world sees only the big stage! what a shame!
john p More than 1 year ago
congratulations T.D.!