|Image by Rennett Stowe via Flickr|
|The late Michael Baze...in God's Winner's Circle tonight!|
By Randy Economy
May 10, 2011
11:07 p.m. PST
He was one of the best young jockey's in America.
Tonight family and friends and fans of Michael Baze are in deep mourning after he was found dead in his Cadillac Escalade late Tuesday afternoon on the back side of legendary Churchill Downs, near Gate 5.
He was only 24.
Jim Wesley, Jefferson County deputy coroner is reporting that "no foul play" is expected in Baze's death, but the Louisville Metro Police is taking the case as a "death investigation."
I have followed horse racing my entire life, and the Baze family is iconic within this magic world of horse racing. His second cousin Russell Baze is one of my all time favorite jocks.
My brother Rick Economy has been in the Horse Racing industry for the past 28 years, and tonight many in this tight knit community are mourning the passing of a "legend in the making."
Image by Rennett Stowe via FlickrAccording to national horse racing publications, Baze was a native of Renton, Washington and he had already racked up 918 wins and career purse earnings of $32 Million. He was on 6,968 mounts, and his last ride took place on April 29 at Keeneland. For this race season, Baze had 34 wins out of 238 starts and ranked 59th in the country out of 1,209 jockeys for purse earnings with nearly $1.2 million. Baze rode Kentucky Derby runner-up Nehro to a second-place finish in the Louisiana Derby before Corey Nakatani took over for the Arkansas and Kentucky Derby's. He became the youngest rider since Bill Shoemaker in 1950 to win a riding title at Hollywood Park (at age 20) and he also won the best jockey title at Del Mar in 2007.
Others in his family of prominent jockeys include his father, Mike, who rode primarily in the northwest; his first cousin, Tyler Baze, the 2000 Eclipse Award winner as the nation’s top apprentice; and nephew Gary Baze, all-time leading rider at the now defunct Longacres in Washington state.
Share you comments and Memory's of Michael here on my blog...below this post...
RIP! So so sad....