Monticello, NY --- During the 2013 season Bruce Aldrich, Jr. won his fourth driving title at Monticello Raceway. His 450 winners were 146 more than runner-up Jimmy Marohn’s 304 and although his 450 wins were second best behind Zeke Parker’s 526 in 1995, for Aldrich that was just half of the story.
|Bruce Aldrich, Jr. won his fourth driving title at Monticello Raceway.|
Although he won races steadily every month, Aldrich’s output here during December was nothing short of amazing. He had an eight-win day, a seven-win day, and four six-win afternoons, and his six driving victories on Dec. 31 placed him in a tie for second in wins in North America with Dave Palone when the curtain came down on the 2013 season. Each accumulated 645 victories during the year but Ronnie Wrenn, Jr.’s 714 was tops in North America.
Aldrich, a longtime favorite at the Mighty M, also won driving titles here in 2001, 2010 and 2011.
“It seemed I couldn’t do anything wrong during December and I reached my personal goal of 600 wins early in the month. I was lucky to be driving live mounts and I guess put them in the right spots and the wins added up. But driving at both Monticello and Saratoga, many times on the same day, took its toll but I’m certainly proud of what I accomplished this year,” Aldrich said.
Trailing Aldrich (450) and Marohn (304) and rounding out the top five in driving victories in 2013 were Jimmy Devaux (229), Jimmy Taggart, Jr. (214), and Zeke Parker (202).
|Bob Lounsbury’s 202 training victories were the second most ever at Monticello Raceway.|
And 2013 was the year that trainer Bob Lounsbury emerged as a tour de force. Although he had won percentage trainer titles here in the past, his 202 training victories topped last year’s champion, Danny Gill, who finished with 192.
But perhaps more incredible was his training percentage of .525, calculated from the 541 horses he sent to post. His overall number of .518 was the best in North America among trainers whose horses started 500-plus times. And for the record, Danny Gill’s .392 UTR was second best on the continent.
Lounsbury’s 202 training victories were the second most ever at Monticello Raceway behind Joe Minieri’s 218 during the 1999 campaign.
“Danny and I had a lot of fun teasing one another and although he had a lead going into December my horses had a great month and we tied him in late December and went on to win the training title, my first ever,” Lounsbury said. “I feel good about that but it’ll be hard to duplicate the (2013) numbers again this year.”
Trailing Lounsbury (202) and Gill (192) and rounding out the top five in training victories during the 2013 season were Gary Messenger (106), Peter Pellegrino (65) and Elisha Lafreniere (55).