Race of the Week 2017

Rachel Not the Same

5 September 2009: Rachel Alexandra and jockey Calvin Borel (3) winning the Woodward Stakes at Saratoga Race Track in Saratoga Springs, New Yorkat Saratoga Race Track in Saratoga Springs, New York
Photo: gardenesque1
So, the “Race for the Ages” is off, and Jess Jackson says they now regret rushing Rachel Alexandra to make the New Orleans Ladies. When a horse doesn’t work for five months, it’s usually more than the weather that is to blame. It was obvious watching Rachel on Saturday that this was not the same filly we saw last year, at least not right now.

It wasn't that she was beaten as much as the manner in which she was beaten. She actually ran to her last six-furlong work, which was totally out of character for her. The warning signs from that work carried over into the race, and one could deduce from Steve Asmussen’s comments that there were major concerns going into this race. There was a reason Asmussen put a figure-8 bridle on her, and to me she didn’t look as comfortable during the race as she did in her races last year and never exuded that feeling of dominance. Read More


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Older Comments about Rachel Not the Same...

Rachel was probably more rusty than spent. Steven Crist had this to say on his most recent blog (The Pollyanna View) - As for Rachel Alexandra, she didn't look like quite the filly she was last year but her effort was hardly that of a sour or washed-up horse. At the top of the stretch I thought Zardana was going to slingshot past her and win by daylight, but Rachel fought back pretty nicely for a filly who hadn't been to the races in seven months to lose by less than a length. (If Zardana hadn't been entered and Rachel had won by the 11 1/2-length margin she had over third--place Unforgotten at the finish, it probably would have been off to the Apple Blossom, possibly as the favorite, off what might be being hailed as a brilliant return.)
  • Medlocke · Well then, too bad she didn't win. Because she would have went on to Oaklawn and the Apple Blossom only to find out that Zenyatta is just "TOO MUCH MARE" for Rachel Alexandra to hold off in the stretch once she uncorks that devastating closing drive. Simply put, Zenyatta is just too big and too physical for Rachel Alexandra, or any horse for that matter, to withstand that closing onslaught. Better foes than Rachel Alexandra have tried and failed to withstand it. JMO. · 2806 days ago
Would someone please look at the times on past performances for Rachel? Even when she whooped a field, the times posted were much slower than those of Zardana (and Zenyatta) at the same distance.
Would someone please look at the times on past performances for Rachel? Even when she whooped a field, the times posted were much slower than those of Zardana (and Zenyatta) at the same distance.
I think that she needs more work outs than she has. On that day that was not her A game next time she run Calvin with have her on her A game i think just for nw she should just have a few more work outs than she will be ready to race and if she wats she can run agenst Zenyatta
Rachel just needs to get fit! She'll be good. Just not as good as Zenyatta.
Seeing what I saw out of Rachel Alexandra in the New Orleans Ladies on Saturday, I'd describe it as a 4yr.old mare, who even after a 6 month rest period away from racing, looked like a spent mare on the track. Assuming that Rachel was racing at 85% of peak level on Saturday, shouldn't that still have been good enough to beat a far inferior group of fillies? Zenyatta was not at peak level either in the Santa Margarita Handicap on Saturday, but she was still good enough to beat a far inferior group of fillies. Maybe that grueling 2009 campaign took more out of Rachel than we know. Maybe she will never return to anywhere near the glory of her 3yr.old season in 2009. My gut says, after watching yesterday's results, that a future Zenyatt-Rachel Alexandra match-up is very doubtful. So maybe the race that the racing public may start crying out to see would be a potential 2010 race that involved both Zenyatta and Quality Road. I do believe after her win on Saturday, that Zenyatta in short order will be back to peak level. Watching Quality Road win the Donn Handicap a month or so ago, it would be hard to believe he's not already at peak level. I'm certain a Zenyatta-Quality Road match-up would make for far more interesting racing than a Zenyata-Rachel Alexandra match-up would at this point. JMO.
A fairly reasonable assessment of her, and her performance.

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