Russell Baze inched closer to surpassing Laffit Pincay's record of 9,530 victories Thursday, riding one winner in six mounts at Bay Meadows to tie the nearly 7-year-old mark.
"Honest, Laffit, I'm not dragging this out," a smiling Baze told Pincay, who will return today for his fifth day of watching and waiting.
Baze has ridden four winners in his last three days of racing.
He will try to break the record today, with scheduled mounts in seven races.
"Surely one of them will jump up and win," he said.
Baze lost his first three races before guiding Christie's Fame to a 4 1/2 -length victory in the sixth.
He was aboard Christie's Fame for the first time, having picked up the mount about an hour earlier after jockey Ricky Frazier took off because of illness.
"I bet he was really ill after that horse won," Baze joked.
Baze got the job done in his typical workmanlike fashion.
He sent Christie's Fame to the lead out of the gate and settled along the rail. They maintained a length lead on the backstretch.
Chased by Afeelyated, Baze peeked under his left arm to check his competition before going to the whip briefly in the stretch.
"It set up like I thought it would," he said. "She's kind of naturally fast. At the quarter pole, I couldn't see anybody catching me."
There was little time for celebrating, though, since he had two more races to ride.
"The pressure was all off at that point," Baze said.
In his last race of the day, Baze went for the record aboard Jans Coach, owned by distant cousin Earl T. Baze II. His orange-and-green silks had the family name on the back, but the horse was bumped going into the turn and faded to sixth.