BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway
YONKERS, NY, Sunday, July 23, 2017—Yonkers Raceway’s perennial leading driver, Jason Bartlett, reached the next plateau Sunday afternoon (July 23rd) with the 7,000th victory of his career.
The milestone number came behind favored I C Caviar ($4.40) in the $11,000, seventh-race trot.
The 6-year-old Malabar Millennium gelding, making his first start for trainer Richard Banca, went up and over Me the Boss (Dan Dube) down the backside, then defeated 65-1 rank outsider Mr. Protab by a couple of lengths in 1:58.2. The winner is co-owned by Joseph & Vincent Barbera, Allan Alkes and Richard Facciola.
But back to the man of hour, who suffered through an un-Bartlett-esque dry spell (3-for-35) before earning his requisite congratulatory sign.
“Longest three days of my life,” Bartlett said, “I’m so happy it’s over, and the kids are, too. “They were asking me, ‘Daddy, do we have to go to the track again?’ “
“I was talking with my wife (Kristen) the other day,” Bartlett said. “We’re been down here (Yonkers) close to 10 years now, and when I first came, I was around 2,000 wins.
“It’s been a helluva ride.”
The 36-year-old Bartlett, native of Augusta, ME, has $87.7 million in career purses. He began Sunday leading the locals in wins (297) and purses ($6.1 million).