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Del Mar: Game On for Zenyatta

Del Mar logo

It's game on, according to trainer John Shirreffs, for two-time champion older female Zenyatta as she approaches her target of three consecutive victories in Del Mar's Grade I, $300,000 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes Saturday.


Shirreffs said this morning that, unless something untoward occurs, Zenyatta would seek a three-peat in the Hirsch, as well as aiming to improve her record number of victories to 18 in her undefeated career.


She tested Del Mar's Polytrack surface for the third time this morning, prompting her regular exercise rider, Steve Willard, to say once again, "She did fine again. She got over it fine."


Asked if Zenyatta would go to the track on race-day morning, trainer John Shirreffs said, "It depends on the weather and how much excitement there is around here."


Zenyatta headlines a field of six for the 1 1/16-mile Hirsch over the main track.


Lining up to offer competition are Princess Taylor, who possibly will be scratched since she worked 5 furlongs on Thursday; Made for Magic, Spring Style, Dance to My Tune and Rinterval. Only Dance to My Tune has tested Zenyatta before, finishing second in Santa Anita's Grade I Santa Margarita Handicap, the champion's 15th consecutive career victory.


There will be no show wagering in the Hirsch, as was the case in the six-horse Vanity Handicap at Hollywood Park, Zenyatta's most recent victory.



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