I’m thinking about re-naming my blog. I realized tonight how much I’ve been posting about Rachel Alexandra (almost as much as my own horses) and I wonder if this Rachel-centric flavor might be turning off people who read this blog, expecting pithy, sarcastic non-Rachel posts. Maybe I need to break out the horse racing commentary to a separate blog. “Say It Isn’t Rachel?”
Horse of the Year
We’ve been waiting for it all week… or longer. The supposition and conjecture, guessing and opining has been going on for days.
Question: Can a pretty little filly beat big, hunkering stallions going a mile-and-an-eighth in the Woodward Stakes?
Rachel Alexandra—Preakness winner, Super Filly, Horse of the Year—defeated older males today in the Woodward Stakes at Saratoga. You can watch how she did it by going to this page and clicking on the link at the beginning of the article.
No girl has ever won the Woodward Stakes. Ever. It didn’t really look that hard, the way Rachel did it; she got to the front… and stayed there. The end-of-race run by Macho Again was incredible and powerful; but Rachel just… kept… running.
Macho Again came *this close* to catching the Super Filly.
You have to credit Macho for his brilliance; he came from dead last to catch Rachel in the home stretch. You can see in the photo above that he almost got past her. Rachel barely won… by a head? A nose? A cheekbone?!
When she goes against fillies her own age, she runs so far out in front it looks like another race. She can put away boys her own age easily. Older mares? They’re afraid to meet up with her (sorry, Zen). And now, Rachel Alexandra has defeated the most feared competition in horse racing: Older Males. Be they stallion or gelding, they are big, experienced, and on the muscle. They’ve been living on the racetrack for three years or more, hopped up on a diet of hot feed and adrenaline. These are not horses you can take home to mother.
On the ESPN website, they said Rachel’s spectacular win in the Woodward “all but clinched” Horse of the Year honors. “All but clinched?” I’d say she’s clinched.
The look of a winner.
Another blogger asked what life would be like if Rachel had run in the Kentucky Derby instead of the Kentucky Oaks. We’ll never know, of course, but to see a three-year-old filly defeat older males in a long race… well, that’s somethin’.
Warning: This post is for pedigree fiends (Thoroughbred) only! All others reading this may experience uncontrollable head spinning and extreme disinterest.
The way people rhapsodize about Rachel Alexandra, you’d think she was the only filly in racing.
But there is another horse, another female equine in fact. One who could possibly make you forget all about little funny-face Rachel… Zenyatta. Named for an album by the Police, she belongs to the M in A&M records, and she is a rock star. She has a perfect record of 12 wins in 12 starts. Not bad.
However… as a horse owner, I take exception to calling Zenyatta the “perfect horse.” Continue reading
It’s been a while since I’ve written anything here,about racing or any other topic. But with the recent rash of Rachel worship, I feel moved to say one thing (not that it will do any good):
Bring the filly to the Breeder’s Cup!
I love Rachel Alexandra’s blaze. It looks like the paintbrush skipped a spot.
Rachel’s story has been an interesting one. Her first owner, the guy who bred and owned her up until May 6 (Adolphus Morrison), ran her in the Kentucky Oaks instead of the Kentucky Derby because he thinks “fillies should run with fillies and stallions with stallions” and the Derby should be a “showcase for stallions.” Never mind the fact that Mine That Bird is a gelding!!! With all due respect… is that the stupidest thing you ever heard? A horse race is a horse race, not a catwalk for the next generation of studs. Continue reading
Two amazing horses finished one-two in the Preakness… Barbaro’s little brother broke his maiden… Azeri delivered her third foal and is doing fine… viewing of the Preakness telecast was up 38%… horse breeders got good news when a colt sold in Maryland for $850k… and no horse broke down in the first two thirds of the Triple Crown.
I let my herd out to run in the moonlight last night, and they all went to bed happy.
We were at church until 3:45 pm today. As we were getting ready to leave, I checked my phone and saw that I had received a text message from Judy. “The dream can be anyone’s,” it said.
So here’s my thing… for the Road to the Roses game, seven horses in my virtual stable will be coming out of the gate on Derby Day. But I can only make five horses “active.” So which two horses do I leave out? This is important… it’s my last chance to blow Ironhorse Stables out of the water in this game!
These are my horses:
- Chocolate Candy
- Desert Party
- Friesan Fire
- I Want Revenge
- Pioneerof the Nile
- West Side Bernie
Who would you pick?
THE FIELD IS SET!
Those are the words emblazoned across the Post Draw page on the Derby website. By the time I had my coffee this morning and thought to direct my browser to said page, the post positions had already been picked. I was disappointed that I didn’t get to see the little silks icons slide into place!
Another horse drops out of Derby contention. Win Willy had a suspicious x-ray on Tuesday, revealing a “line” in his near fore ankle. That’s too bad; he is an intriguing horse, having won the Rebel Stakes as a 57-1 longshot.
This reduces the number of starting grays to three.
Willy will be replaced in the gate by Nowhere to Hide, a colt who has won once out of eight starts, and seems to like fourth place: he was fourth to Friesan Fire in the Risen Star, fourth to Musket Man in the Tampa Bay Derby, and fourth to that horse again in the Illinois Derby.
But you can’t bet on fourth place.
The changes in the Derby lineup have been coming fast this morning. Square Eddie is out, Quality Road is out… That meant that my horse, Take the Points, would be in, but…. Take the Points is out! It seems like trainers these days are being careful with their top tier horses; instead of throwing them in the Derby, no matter what, they’re pulling them out if the horse is not 110%. Which is a good thing. I suppose the demise of Eight Belles last year is weighing on everyone, a little bit.