01/16/2008 1:00AM

Radosevich wins 1,000th race


Trainer Jake Radosevich won his 1,000th race Monday with a formula that most trainers have found successful - hard work and luck.

Radosevich, 42, purchased Lucky Uncle Jake, who gave him his milestone win, just two weeks ago and the horse was making his first start for him. Lucky Uncle Jake drew off on the turn by six lengths and looked like an easy winner. But he was overtaken at the eighth pole by two others and it looked as though he was beaten until jockey Ivan Gonzalez convinced Lucky Uncle Jake otherwise, and he gamely prevailed by a neck.

"A lot of people asked if I bought the horse because of his name, but he was just part of a package deal of horses I bought from Chicago," Radosevich said. "It worked out well getting the win and it was also my son Jacob's birthday."

Jake's father, Joe, is a trainer, and his whole family is involved with horses.

"My dad trained horses in Chicago and we all grew up working for him and around horses," Radosevich said. "He taught us all how to work hard, and it has paid off."

According to Radosevich's mother, Jackie, Jake has "always loved horses, watching them, working with them. It's his passion."

The oldest of the Radosevich clan is Joe Jr., a pinhooker, then comes Jeff, a trainer based at Thistledown who is now at Gulfstream Park. He is followed by Jill, who helps out her younger brother Jake at his farm and training center.

"We have 22 acres, with an indoor horse pool and indoor gallop ring and an outdoor training track, just three miles from Beulah," Radosevich said.

With 30 horses in training, Radosevich, his wife, Shelley, his sister Jill, and son Jake Jr. have their hands full. Radosevich's daughter Jamie, now at the Fair Grounds galloping for Steve Asmussen in the mornings and ponying horses during the races, is carrying on the tradition of hard work, becoming the third generation to be involved with horses.

Radosevich has won 14 training titles at Beulah Park and one at River Downs.

As for getting win 1,000, Radosevich said: "It was just another win, I wasn't really thinking about it until somebody told me I was getting close. It was just another day."