MILTON, Ont. — Sylvain Filion became the first Canadian-based driver in harness racing history to reach 10,000 career wins on Monday night at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
The 54-year-old Filion entered Monday’s card just a win shy of the milestone and wasted little time in enjoying the moment by winning the evening’s first race.
Filion and two-year-old pacing filly One More Bet won a Harvest Series first leg division by five-lengths in 1:52.3 at odds of 3-1.
The victory makes Filion the 23rd driver in North America to reach 10,000 wins. Although multiple Canadian-born drivers have reached 10,000 wins, Filion is the first driver exclusively based in Canada to reach the milestone.
“I never thought in my wildest dreams that I would ever even come close to achieving what I did,” said Filion, who recalled his first driving win.
“Supreme Jade in Ottawa at Rideau Carleton that was my first win (in 1987), it was just an overnight, it’s a while ago.”
Born in Angers, Que., Filion began his driving career in 1987 and worked his way to the top of the Quebec racing scene for many years. Filion tried the Woodbine circuit for a brief period in the late-1990s and then returned permanently to the nation’s top circuit in 2008.
Filion’s career accomplishments include winning the 1999 World Driving Championship, four O’Brien Awards as Canada’s Driver of the Year (2012, 2013, 2015, 2016) and multiple Woodbine driving titles.
"You know, 10,000 is pretty nice, but the next 10,000 might be a little trickier,” said Filion.
The career numbers for Filion now read 10,000 wins and more than $138 million in earnings.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 23, 2023.
The Canadian Press