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Vanity Not Same Without Zenyatta

Hollywood Park logo.
Photo: Hollywood Park

The $250,000 Grade I Vanity Handicap will not be quite the same without retired three-time winner Zenyatta but the distaff championship of the Hollywood Park will not be lacking for drama Saturday.

 

Champion Blind Luck and two females who finished close seconds to Zenyatta last year--St Trinians and Switch--are expected to vie for favoritism in a field of six in the 1 1/8-mile race on Cushion Track.

 

“She’s doing good,” said trainer Mike Mitchell Thursday, hoping that luck will be on the side of St Trinians this time. The English-bred mare was overtaken in the final strides to finish second, one-half length behind Zenyatta, in the Vanity last year and was disqualified from first for interference in the stretch in her last start, the Milady Handicap  May 21.

 

Switch can relate to St Trinians, also being collared in deep stretch by Zenyatta to finish second by one-half length in the Lady’s Secret Stakes here last October. C R K Stable owner Lee Searing is distributing 4,000 free T-shirts with a “Go Switch” logo on the chest to fans on a first-come, first-serve basis.

 

Blind Luck will leave from the outside post under high weight of 123 pounds as she seeks to provide trainer Jerry Hollendorfer with a special gift on the conditioner’s 65th birthday.

 

The lineup also includes lightly raced American Story, the expected pacesetter for trainer Bob Baffert, and Miss Match, who won the Grade I Santa Margarita Stakes as a 45-1 longshot two starts back.

 

Miss Match, a 6-year-old Argentine-bred mare, subsequently finished fourth in the Apple Blossom Handicap April 15 at Oaklawn Park April 15, a race in which Switch finished second behind winner Havre de Grace.

 

“The Apple Blossom was a mistake,” said Hall of Fame trainer Neil Drysdale of the 1 1/16-mile race. “It was too short for her. She’s doing very well since she came back.” Drysdale seeks a record-equaling fifth Vanity win.

 

John Shirreffs, who set the record of five after Zenyatta’s three-peat last year, will only have cherished memories of the Vanity this year as he saddles starters in three other races Saturday. “Maybe I’ll get a chance to try it again one day,” said Shirreffs.

 

Zenyatta, in foal to Bernardini in Kentucky, not only was the only horse to win the Vanity three times in its 69-year history, she also carried a staggering 129 pounds in her last two wins.

 

 

 

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Older Comments about Vanity Not Same Without Zenyatta...

I thought the Vanity was a great race. blind Luck was awesome and the others ran really well!
hahahhaha....you know what they say about assumptions?
Ann Maree- Small mindedness? We are the few people who wouldn't buy the crow the Mosses were trying to sell their fans. "We'll go to the Stephen Foster or The Whitney, we promise it will be different this time, etc. etc." Then they pulled another lame excuse that they wanted to keep her "Safe." What, was the mare allergic to racing against the best in the handicap division? Every HOTY eligible raced against each other before the BCC, not her. Because apparently shes too special to do anything significant.
  • Zgirlsrule · Same few people who probly had a Blame,Looking at Lucky and Haynesfield in their exotic bets and lost their asses. · 1252 days ago
Very amusing. What's funny is that no body, and I mean nobody, pays any mind or gives any credence to the criticism handed out by Zen haters! (Please check Zen's Wiki page for all the reasons she deserves every single accolade she gets!) Her critics are to be pitied, I think because they are so irrelevlant. She's has moved into star territory that even the most ardent hater could only dream about for whatever their horse favorite. You may not care for the "great unwashed", but 86,000 Facebook fans easily override any puny negative comments that are viewed by one and all as "sour grapes". The opinions of others around the world, not just in the U.S. is she is a horse for the ages and she is firmly ensconsed at the top of any mare list out there. And that sure seems to rile the zen haters. Just amazing how their voices tend to echo in the empty chambers of their own small mindedness. Hey, get over it. Find another whipping girl!
Got who???...you were dumb enough to make a comment without knowing the fact...so that was your cover up? You're not talking to any kid here...so just shut up and stop defending a coward bunch of connection.
  • Zgirlsrule · I posted it on purpose to see how apeshit ya'll would go...I got my laugh..thats all that counts ;) · 1252 days ago
4everZenyatta....this topic is about Zenyatta and the Vanity. I think most of us was making a joke about the connection. But Zgirlrule been in RA into the topic with a dumb ass comment without knowing the facts.
  • Zgirlsrule · I posted it on purpose to see how apeshit ya'll would go...I got my laugh..thats all that counts ;) · 1252 days ago
No...I was putting some bullsh!t out there just to see who would jump down my throat first,I was joking.It worked..lol...You are a child that doesnt know anything and likes to call people names to make yourself feel better.You ARE pathetic. You trash talk Zenyatta and who are you?Zenyatta might not be that great to you but highly doubt anyones going to remember your screen name in 10 years.Little man behind the computer ACTING as if he knows everything about racing when truth be known,youre just another POS at the track prolly begging for buck to try your chance at one more trifecta so you dont leave the track broke.You stay on this site all the time so really doubt you even have a life.Its hard to have a life when spend almost every minute doggin out a horse thats greater than you'll ever be.Peace little man;)
zxswordxz-- What do you call your comments? Intelligent? I do not care what word or words you use, it won't make your comments any more educated (since that is what you often claim to be doing, "educating") , rather just the child like, name calling rants that they are. Half the time your comments are unreadlable and one wonders if either you do not understand what people are saying or do not take the time to fully read a post or comment. Perhaps try to clarify if you do not understand. I do believe your referred to me as a "dumbass" because you did not understand the comment. Again, I do not care what meaningless drivel you post, just be prepared if and when it comes back and bites you in the, well, ass.
I call it as I see it, because it seems like a lot of you Zenyatta fans make dumb comments without any facts to back it up, it almost like they are in denial of the truth.. maybe I should use the word "imbecile" or "numbskill" instead. If you don't like it, maybe you should make like your screen name and "SkiptheCountry".
Agreed SkiptheCountry ;)
Think of the real races in a season. Dubai, Jockey club, Woodward, Stephen foster, donn handicapp, Santa anita big cap, among many others throughout a season in which the Zenyatta connections didnt enter this horse. They were cowards. If I have the best horse im going to race him/her like a champ. Like Curlin go anywhere / face anyone.
zXswordxz-- You might want to be more careful calling people stupid, and what seems to be one of your favorite insults, dumbass. Your posts/comments do not exactly scream "educated" in manner.
For the record...I love Zenyatta as a horse. It there coward connection that I dislike....I would think higher of her career if she ran in better competition and lost a couple race than run in weak ass competition with the exception of the BCC. Heck, if a lot of horse ran those type of campaign, we would see a lot of undefeated horses.
I swear to god...Zenyatta fans are the most stupidest ppl in horse racing. It seems like the start following horse racing yesterday. @ BrittanyHamilton Do you know what happen to RA in the Woodward? Calvin gutted her and she will never be the same horse again....the horse career was done at that point. If you think RA owner back down in the AB. What happen to the Kentucky Oaks in 2009? Let me educate your dumbass, Zenyatta connection back out of it at the last minute. Their excuse???the condition is not good to race her in...You want an article on that too? I can provide you with it if you like....I swear to good these ppl learn about horse racing yesterday and trying to debate things that they have little knowledge about.....Just go away...day in and day out this forum prove that Zenyatta fans are pure nut case and uneducated about horse racing. Like Zgirlrule, saying that RA owner enter her in the Stephen Foster at the last minute...when RA never ran in any SF
I agree with BrittanyHamilton. Jackson pulled her out and she was perfectly sound. It was only because he was afraid of Rachel losing.
I agree skipaway2000. Switch seems to hold a tactical advantage and beat Blind Luck in last year's Hollywood Oaks by getting first run.
@Timgsmith10 Zenyattas owners wanter to face RA in the Apple Blossom and RAs owner backed down
I think Switch is going to really step it up here.
This years vanity is a fairly competive group Im looking forward to it. Zgirl Go away / Its known to all zenyattas connections were cowards.
And Reverand Jim Jones told the 86,000 Facebook fan multitude to drink the Koolaid, and they did.

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