merriman 6000by Evan Pattak

The Meadows Racetrack and Casino and the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association  honored driver Aaron Merriman for achieving 6,000 career victories.

Merriman, who splits his time between The Meadows and Northfield Park, notched the milestone win on October 8 at Northfield.

Following Wednesday’s (October 9) first race, the MSOA congratulated Merriman with a winners’ circle presentation.

“I’m happy to be at 6,000,” Merriman, 35, said. Is mounts have won more than $30 million. “I treat every race the same — I want to win every one — so every win is a milestone for me.”

A native of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, Merriman averaged 590 victories per season from 2006 to 2009 and was the leading driver at Northfield all four years. He sustained serious injuries in a June 11, 2010 race mishap that sidelined him for five months. Merriman says he’s driving as confidently as ever since the horrific crash.

“Mentally, I’m past it,” he said. “I don’t even think about it. Most of the guys will tell you I’m probably more aggressive than most everybody. Physically, I know I’ll never be the same. It’s something that you learn to live with. Everybody’s got aches and pains. It’s nothing to complain about. You just wake up every day and do your job.”

Merriman said his top priority is to roll up as many wins as he can.

“Eventually, I’d like to win 10,000 races,” he said. “That’s a goal of mine because at the 6,000 plateau, I think it’s very conceivable if I stay healthy. If I make it, we’ll go on from there.”