Owners Ken and Sarah Ramsey won their unprecedented 400th career race at Churchill Downs on Wednesday when 3-year-old gelding Sandbar prevailed in the second race.
The Ramseys, multiple Eclipse Award winners who race their horses in the familiar white and red silks branded with an “R,” are the all-time leading owners at Churchill Downs, with Overbrook Farm a distant second with 208 victories. The Nicholasville, Ky. couple has won a record 22 owners' titles at the historic Louisville racetrack: nine Spring Meet championships, 11 Fall Meet championships and two September Meet championships.
Ramsey, who celebrated his 79th birthday Monday just two days after winning the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (GI) at Santa Anita with Bobby's Kitten, said that while 400 victories is a great accomplishment, he still has one more goal left on his Churchill Downs bucket list.
“This is a tremendous accomplishment,” Ramsey said. “I never thought I'd get to 400 wins but I still need to get one more across the way over there in the Derby (Winner's Circle) before my time is up. But I'll tell you, it's difficult; I've started several horses in the Kentucky Derby and haven't gotten a win there yet so that remains my number one goal.”
Ramsey, who was on hand Wednesday with son Jeff Ramsey, had a lot of people to thank after reaching Wednesday's milestone.
“I really want to thank all the fans who have come out and supported us all this time,” Ramsey said. “It's taken me 79 years to get 400 wins here, so I hope it doesn't take that long to get another 400.
“I definitely need to give credit to all the trainers, jockeys, farm managers, my son Jeff and everybody else who have helped us over the years. It's definitely not a one-man show. There's so much work that goes into this and we're just all very thankful for being able to achieve this milestone.”
Ramsey has started six horses in the Kentucky Derby with his best finish coming from Ten Cents a Shine, who was eighth in 2003. His 2-year-old International Star, who won the Oct. 5 Grey (GIII) at Woodbine, is tied for third place on the early Road to the 2015 Kentucky Derby standings with 10 points.
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