Mark Casse became the 34th trainer in Thoroughbred racing history to Win 3,000 races. It happened Thursday at Gulfstream Park West when SOUPER WATSON scored a decisive 2-length Victory in the 3rd race, while paying $17 on a $2 dollar Win wager
The 59-year-old, who was elected to the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame earlier this year, watched the milestone Win on television from his Ocala, Florida farm.
Said Casse; “It feels good. I watched it with my son, Colby, and we gave each other high-fives and celebrated.”
Nick Tomlinson, Casse’s South Florida-based assistant trainer, saddled SOUPER WATSON, who broke his Maiden under jockey Miguel Vasquez. The horse was on a 6 1/2-month layoff prior to Winning the 7 1/2-furlong Maiden Special Weight race on turf.
“[Training] is something I’ve just wanted to do my entire life. Milestones mean a lot. This has made me think back over the years,” Casse said. “I went through a period of seven or eight years where I didn’t train many horses. We kicked back in, I want to say, 20 years ago. When we Won 1,000, I said, ‘Well, that was nice.’ Then, when we Won 2,000, I said, ‘I don’t think there will be 3,000.’ I don’t know if there will be 4,000. We’ll see.”
A native of Indiana, Casse took out his trainer’s license at the age of 17 in Massachusetts. He saddled his first career Winner, JOE’S COMING, in 1979 at Keeneland and his first Graded-Stakes Winner came in 1984 when Winning the Grade 3 Jamaica at Belmont Park with RAJA’S SHARK.
A 12-time Sovereign Award Winner, Casse this year is ranked 6th in North America by Wins (172) as well as purse earnings ($10.7 million).
Just a few of Casse’s many highlights include saddling Winners in the 2019 Preakness Stakes (WAR OF WILL) and 2019 Belmont Stakes (SIR WINSTON) and training two-time champion TEPIN, Winner of the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Casse has Won training titles at Woodbine, Keeneland, Churchill and Turfway.
Kudos and a tip of the hat to Mr. Casse and his staff for this latest achievement.