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Zenyatta Wins Hirsch Again

Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Moss' unbeaten equine phenomenon Zenyatta continued her march toward Thoroughbred racing immortality Saturday as she won her 18th consecutive race with a narrow but convincing  victory in the Grade I  $300,000 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes before an admiring audience of  32,536.

 

With regular rider Mike Smith in the saddle,  the strapping six-year-old daughter of Street Cry outran the surprising 10-1 outsider Rinterval to win by a neck to continue her amazing streak of triumphs, most in modern major racing history. Princess Taylor was third, with Spring Style fourth in the small field of six older fillies and mares.

 

Zenyatta, sent postward at 1-9 while carrying highweight of 123 pounds, was scoring her third straight success in the Hirsch, equaling the Del Mar feats of Native Diver, Flawlessly and Track Gal who also won a Del Mar stakes event three years in a row.

 

Typically, Zenyatta dropped off the pace to run fifth in the early stages of the mile and one-sixteenth race behind dawdling fractions of 25.41 for the first quarter and 50.61 at the half-mile for Rinterval under jockey Rafael Bejarano.

 

The slow pace continued until midway of the stretch turn where Smith sent Zenyatta into contention on the far outside, engaged a stubborn Rinterval who proved difficult to beat in a stirring duel to the wire. Final time was 1:45.03 with a blistering final sixteenth in 5.94 seconds.

 

Princess Taylor was another 2 1/4 lengths back in third, with Spring Style almost four lengths farther back.

 

With no show wagering, Zenyatta returned $2.20 to win and $2.10 to place. Because of heavy action on the winner, there was a minus place pool of $94,675.39.

 

First money of  $180,000 increased the John Shirreffs-trained star's career earnings to $6,254,580 as she jumped from 23rd to 16th on the all-time list of money-winners with at least a single start in North America.

 

 

What the Nation is saying about Zenyatta Wins Hirsch Again...

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oops!!! I really want to see Rachel Alexandra VS Blind Luck!!!!!!!!!1
pacepal_pete you forgot to mention another great West Coast horse, Blind Luck who also won the Kentucky Oaks and is the best 3yr old female out there and will probably win the Lady's Classic this year---Forget about Rachel Alexandra VS Zenyatta, Zenyatta is better----I want to see
Bob, Bob, Bob, Bob, Bob....The quacking is coming from the East. West Coast horses routinely ship East and kick butt. Zenyatta had no problem at Oaklawn and will crush again in the Classic (once again beating the best horses in the world - that includes the East Coast, Mid-West, Canada & other countries).. Lookin At Lucky did okay in the Haskell he's from the West Coast in case you didn't know. Where were the East Coast monsters at Oaklawn? We recognize great horses here. Spectacular Bid, Skip Away, we loved them and many thought Quality Road could be a major threat to Queen Z. We have West Coast experts who voted for Rachel Alexander for HOY. Maybe you should start an East Coast Championship (sorry Canterbury already has the Claiming Crown).. Seems to me West Coast horses perform well in all the major races in the US and seems we crush in Dubai also, which I'm sure costs you money, thus causing your irrational opinions.
Sad to say I would have to put Zenyatta right up there with Hallowed Dreams the Lousiana Bred that had that great streak racing strictly in Lousiana. Only west coast racing fans will kneel at her altar. The real racing fan will see her for what she really is. A really good poly-track horse who rarely if at all put her record on the line against any serious race horse. She races against cup-cakes on her home course and then the tea drinkers have this notion that she is super woman. Meanwhile the real sportsmen race their good horses agsinst good competition, (see RA last year) and it is not suprising it takes alot out of these horses(see RA this year). Zenyatta has all easy races against overmatched horses(can you name one horse she has beaten this year) and then god forbid she has one race against any kind of quality field again she has a distinct advantage because these horse have been running hard and expending their form in races that Zenyatta continues to duck. Of course thats her owners game plan. Keep her undefeated in easy races then hopefully fire one big shot in the Breeders Cup. By the way it would not suprise me at all if Zenyatt does not show up at the BC with some flimsy excuse. In my heart I know they don't want to take her out of california and face top flight competition. The botton line is if you want to be called the best you have to beat the best and Zenyatta has never come even close to doing that.
luvzenyatta, Make no mistake about it. Rinterval has ran back to back solid efforts in America. Having ran 2nd to Informed Decision in the Chicago Handicap in July at Arlington, and to Zenyatta in yesterday's Clement L.Hirsch. The difference between them is this. Rintereval was full out. Giving her absolute all against Zenyatta. Zenyatta was never out of second gear. Bejarano is talking trash. Because if Zenyatta has needed to go to another gear to beat Rintereval, she certainly had plenty more gears to shift through. Mathematic don't like. Zenyatta has got gears and more gears at her disposal. There's not a horse anywhere in racing that Zenyatta is not able to run down. She may not beat them by much. But she can still go to whatever gear necessary to run by them at the wire. Not Blame. Not Quality Road. Not Rachel Alexandra. Not Rail Trip. None of these horses will stop Zenyatta from winning back to back Classics, and retiring undefeated as one of the all time greats. She'll likely retire 20 for 20 as the only other horse besides Tiznow to win back to back Classics. Tiznow beat Giant's Causeway in 2000. And Arc De Triomphe winner, Sakhee in 2001.
'Quality field' is a relative thing. It would have been wonderful to have Z beat a mare of such quality as Vodka (Jpn), who has traveled internationally and won $13+ million dollars. V was in Dubai to run in the World Cup when she was withdrawn because of a career-ending injury. Now, that is quality that lives and breathes today. By the way, Z was invited to Ascot and Dubai and passed, but noone deprived her owners of their right to make these decisions; why do we want to deprive RA's owners of the same privilege? Stop being the bullies on the block and beating up your own American neighbors; strike out at the international crowd.
Obviously I'm very happy that Zenyatta remains unbeaten, but I'm confused ..if someone could help me out. I read in an article that Mike Smith said "I hit the button a little too soon". Then I read that Bejarano said, "I tried to wait but she came up outside me and I had to go. If I could have waited a little more it might have been different". Does that make Smith right for "hitting the button too soon?"
I can't believe these people that say Zenyatta has never beat a quality field. What do you call the BC Classic? Is there a higher class race in America? I think she would need to beat a horse from the planet Krypton with powers and abilities far beyond those of Earthly horses for these people to be satisfied, because so far no horse from this planet has been able to beat her.
I just can't believe these people who say Zenyatta has never beat a quality field. What do you call the BC Classic a bunch of nags? I think she would have to beat a horse from the planet Krypton with powers and abilities far beyond those of Earthly horses for them to be satisfied, because so far no horse from this planet has been able to do it.
She won this same race last year by a neck, DELMAR is not her track, but 18 for 18 graded stakes wins- game.set.match!!!!
Oh please, you all bashed rachel for racing nobody, so why not do the same to zenyatta? She raced nobody, and only won by a nose, rachel took care of business in her race. You mention these horses from overseas, i see your point, but none of them were winners, just placers, and theres no telling how well they would do here in america, and against zenyatta of all horses. Why did zenyatta choose this race, is she trying to race the best competition, or just trying to stay undefeated at this point for her career? Compare the horses rachel alexandra has beaten in her career, the best in the country, and zenyatta has never raced competition like that EVER!
Oh please, you all bashed rachel for racing nobody, so why not do the same to zenyatta? She raced nobody, and only won by a nose, rachel took care of business in her race. You mention these horses from overseas, i see your point, but none of them were winners, just placers, and theres no telling how well they would do here in america, and against zenyatta of all horses. Why did zenyatta choose this race, is she trying to race the best competition, or just trying to stay undefeated at this point for her career? Compare the horses rachel alexandra has beaten in her career, the best in the country, and zenyatta has never raced competition like that EVER!
Anyone who tries to brag about that pitiful Lady's Secret Stakes field that was really a glorified Allowance race that Rachel Alexandra just won, and claim that Zenyatta raced nobody in this race has their head stuck up their proverbial ass. It wasn't American filly's and mares that were trying to dethrone Zenyatta today. It was race-mares from Ireland and Great Britain. Rinterval, that ran 2nd today, also just ran 2nd to Informed Decision in the Chicago Handicap at Arlington in July. I'd say Informed Decision is a pretty fare measuring stick. Rinterval also ran 2nd to another great European mare, Lush Lashes, in the 2008 Goff Hotel Millions Stakes at the Curragh in Ireland. The 3rd place finisher in today's Clement L. Hirsch, Princess Taylor, is from Great Britain. She ran 2nd in the 09' Plantation Stud Fillies Stakes at Newmarket to Barshiba. Barshiba is a back to back Lancashire Oaks winner, and was just 3rd in the Hardwicke Stakes at Ascot. Princess Taylor was also 2nd in the Warwickshire Oaks Stakes at Warwick in 2009. The 3rd place finisher, Spring Style, is also from Ireland. I really couldn't find much information about her lifetime stats. Dance To My Tune and Made For Magic rounded out the field. Dance To My Tune finished 2nd to Zenyatta in the 2010 Santa Margarita Handicap. And Made For Magic just won the G2 Milady Handicap in May. A race won by Zenyatta in both 2008 and 2009. So I think it's pretty fair to say that Zenyatta had plenty of worth competition in this year's Clement L. Hirsch. What's so amazing is that Mike Smith never really had her out of second gear in the race. She responded to go by the entire field under a hand ride the whole way. Smith never touched Zenyatta with the stick. She only won by a head. But Del-Mar has never been Zenyatta's favorite surface. And given her running style as a deep closer, she's never going to win any race by much at all. But she just covers so much ground so quickly, and always knows what gear Smith needs her to be in. She's managed to be in the correct gear 18 straight times now. Even though I think both Blame and Quality Road are fantastic horses. Probably America's two best COLTS over conventional dirt. Neither of them has ever won beyond 9 furlongs. That 1 extra furlong in the B.C. Classic can make all the difference. That's why I think Zenyatta will run either one of them down in the Classic. The further the distance of the race, the more effective Zenyatta's closing kick becomes. I think Zenyatta would be a fantastic 12 furlong mare if they ever wanted to race her at that distance. This horse can run all day long until the cows come home. Well done Zenyatta. Keep on keepin' on!!!!
Zenyatta does it again. I don't think we'll ever see another like her. The late-running win machine is now 18-for-18 and never has an off day regardless of race shape. She is a joy to watch!

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