Mike Man’s Gold surged past Cody’s Choice and Capital Expense in the final furlong of Sunday’s fifth race, and into the record book at Emerald Downs.
Powering home for a four-length victory in a $25,000 claiming race, 9-year-old Mike Man’s Gold became the track’s all-time leader in wins with 22, one better than West Seattle Boy.
Ridden by Gary Wales, Mike Man’s Gold ran 5½ furlongs in 1:03 and paid $6.40 to win. Joe Toye is the trainer and co-owner with Greg Conley and Chuck Conley of Redmond.
A Washington-bred by Liberty Gold-Chedoodle, Mike Man’s Gold is 22-5-6 in 51 starts at Emerald Downs, a career that fittingly began with a victory on July 7, 2012, and includes four stakes wins.
Mike Man’s Gold earned $9,130 Sunday and has career earnings of $346,833, good for No. 47 all-time among Washington-breds. His 22 victories include 15 sprints and seven routes.
Wales, who has been up for all three wins this year, said he was a bit stressed before the race, but said he enjoyed a push-button trip sitting behind speedsters Capital Expense and Cody’s Choice.
“I felt a little pressure riding him today,” said Wales, the meet’s leading rider with 87 wins. “I didn’t want to disappoint Joe, Greg and Chuck, but once I slipped him outside, the rest was history.”
Toye and the Conleys have owned Mike Man’s Gold for his last 12 wins and reclaimed the gelding twice this season for $25,000.
“We enjoy him and we love him,” Greg Conley said. “Everyone at the track loves him.”
Breeders Keith and Jan Swagerty, who owned the gelding through his 4-year-old season and won four stakes with him, were on hand in the winner’s circle.
Said Joe Toye: “We are lucky to have Mike Man’s Gold, and thank you to the Swagertys for raising such a valiant horse.”
Emerald Downs all-time wins
Mike Mans Gold, 22
West Seattle Boy, 21
Buddy Dave, 17
Olympic Lights, 17
Bob Stories, 16
Market Master, 16