Today in Sports History: June 29

In 1983, Puerto Rican jockey, Ángel Cordero Jr., won his 5,000th race at the Belmont stakes, at 40 years old, becoming the 4th jockey to record this milestone.

Cordero Jr. competed professionally from 1960 until 1995. His career slowly declined after 1995 as he did not compete once until 2005 and once in 2008. Out of 38,658 races, Cordero Jr. won 18.25% of his competitions. 

Cordero Jr. was a winner of six Triple Crown races, including three Kentucky Derbies. He won the Kentucky Derby with Cannonade in 1974, Bold Forbes in 1976, and Spend a Buck in 1985. He won the Preakness Stakes with Codex in 1980 and Gate Dancer in 1984 and won the Belmont Stakes with Bold Forbes in 1976. 

He led the All-North American professional riders in wins in 1968 and in earnings in 1976, 1982, and 1983. He was also awarded the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Jockey in 1982, 1983, and 1985. 

He also won four Breeders’ Cup races; The 1985 Distaff with Life’s Magic, the 1988 Juvenile Fillies with Open Mind, the 1988 Sprint with Gulch, and the 1989 Sprint with Dancing Spree. He became the ‘King of Saratoga’ as he won 14 riding titles.

Throughout his career, he won a total of $164,570,627 million dollars. During his career, he was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1988 for his outstanding accomplishments. 

Once Cordero Jr. retired in 1995, he spent some time as a trainer and became the agent of Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez. 

He currently resides as an agent still involved in the sport. He is currently training up-and-coming young rider, Manny Franco, at Belmont Park.

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