Press Release

baze_russellALBANY, CALIF. – Hall of Fame jockey Russell Baze has announced his retirement, effective immediately.

According to Equibase statistics, Baze won 12,842 races in North America, more than any other jockey. A native of Vancouver, B.C., Baze began his career in the Pacific Northwest, winning his first race Oct. 28, 1974 at Yakima Meadows. He posted his final win Saturday in the 10th race at Golden Gate Fields.

Baze’s 54 riding titles at Golden Gate Fields include the championship he won during the recently concluded 2015-16 Winter/Spring Meet. The 57-year-old won a total of 5,765 races at Golden Gate Fields during his career.

“All of us at The Stronach Group would like to congratulate Russell Baze on his stellar career and offer our best wishes as he begins his retirement,” said Joe Morris, Senior Vice President of West Coast Operations. “For decades Russell dominated the jockey standings at Golden Gate Fields and other Northern California tracks. His 12,842 wins in North America is a record that may never be broken.”

Baze overtook Laffit Pincay, Jr. as North America’s top rider by wins when he recorded career victory No. 9,531 on Dec. 1, 2006 at Bay Meadows. He is the only jockey to win 400 or more races for seven straight years (1992-1998).

Baze’s top mounts include Hawkster, Itsallgreektome, Soviet Problem, Event of the Year, Lost in the Fog, Bold Chieftain, Smiling Tiger and Shared Belief.

Baze was inducted into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame in 1999 and the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2012. His fellow jockeys honored him with the George Woolf Memorial Award in 2002.


Russell Baze’s career statistics

Birthdate: August 7, 1958

Birthplace: Vancouver, B.C.

Starts: 53,578

Wins: 12,842

Seconds: 9,600

Thirds: 7,855

Earnings: $199,334,219


Russell Baze’s career statistics at Golden Gate Fields

Starts: 21,983

Wins: 5,765

Seconds: 4,267

Thirds: 3,383

Earnings: $88,975,792


Notable Northern California Stakes Wins:

Bay Meadows H.: 2008 Bold Chieftain; 2005 Adreamisborn; 2001 Super Quercus; 1995 Caesour; 1982 Super Moment

California Derby: 2014 Exit Stage Left; 2013 Zeewat; 2009 Chocolate Candy; 2006 Cause to Believe; 2004 Trieste’s Honor; 1999 Red Sky’s; 1981 Always a Cinch

El Camino Real Derby: 2014 Tamarando; 2011 Silver Medallion; 2010 Connemara; 2009 Chocolate Candy; 2007 Bwana Bull; 2006 Cause to Believe; 2005 Uncle Denny; 1998 Event of the Year; 1984 French Legionaire

Golden Gate Handicap/Turf Stakes: 2009 Spring House; 2005 Adreamisborn; 2000 Deploy Venture; 1982 Regal Bearing

San Francisco Mile: 2010 Bold Chieftain


Grade 1 Stakes Wins:

Ancient Title: 2010 Smiling Tiger

King’s Bishop: 2005 Lost in the Fog

Oak Tree Inv.: 1989 Hawkster; 1984 Both Ends Burning

Santa Monica: 1991 Devil’s Orchid



Victory Number; Date; Track; Winning Mount

12,000; July 7, 2013; Pleasanton; Handful of Pearls

11,000; Aug. 14, 2010; Santa Rosa; Separate Forest

10,000; Feb. 1, 2008; Golden Gate Fields; Two Step Cat

9,000; June 2, 2005; Golden Gate Fields; Queen of the Hunt

8,000; Oct. 26, 2002; Bay Meadows; Ourwhistlebritches

7,000; July 4, 2000; Pleasanton; This Is the Moment

6,000; Dec. 3, 1997; Golden Gate Fields; Clover Hunter

5,000; July 29, 1995; Santa Rosa; Cyrus Says

4,000; March 3, 1993; Golden Gate Fields; Frank Musso

3,000; Dec. 9, 1988; Hollywood Park; Hagley’s Lyon

1: Oct. 28, 1974; Yakima Meadows; Oregon Warrior