Race of the Week 2017

Zardana in an Absolute Shocker!

Zardana shocks Rachel Alexandra in the 2010 New Orleans Ladies at the Fair Grounds
Reigning Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra got beat by John Shirreffs other filly Zardana in an absolute shocker in the New Orleans Ladies' Stakes.

What was expected to be an easy return race for Rachel Alexandra turned into one of the biggest upsets in recent racing history when Zardana challenged Rachel Alexandra at the top of the stretch and drew off from the champion winning by three quarters of a length at the wire. It was another 11 1/2 lengths to Unfortgotten in third. Fighter Wing and Clear Sailing rounded out the field.

Rachel Alexandra pushed Fighter Wing through early fractions of 23 4/5 sedonds and 47 3/5 seconds. Rachel Alexandra passed that rival easily before being confronted by Zardana at the top of the stretch. Zardana finally got past Rachel Alexandra at the quarter pole and it was another eighth of a mile before the very confident Calvin Borel went to his whip on Rachel Alexandra, by then it was too late.

What this race means to the possible showdown of Rachel Alexandra and Zenyatta in the Apple Blossom has not been determined at this time.

Zardana is owned by Arnold Zetcher. She covere the 1 1/16 mile distance in 1:43.55


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Older Comments about Zardana in an Absolute Shocker!...

If RA bounces back and can put in a 1 mi. work in 1:39 in two weeks, come back with a good 5F work, why not run in the AB?
I don't think we will see RA at the AB. Even an 85% RA should have been what she was up against yesterday based on how she ran in 09. I think the best campaign won HOY in 09 not the best horse and now RA is paying for it. I am a Zenyatta fan, I just think what RA accomplished last year was great but she may never be the same horse again. I want RA and Z to match up when they feel RA is 100%. With Z yesterday, she go into traffic had to duck to the inside and still won going away and Mike never had to use the whip. Go Zenyatta!
  • kmb · I agree to a degree. JJ put RA through a grueling campaign last year, one no other 3yr. old filly has ever had to do, but at what cost!! Even JJ admitted RA lost 100lbs after the Woodward, and it was a cost to her health. It is entirely JJ's fault that RA had to lay off training for such a long period of time. RA's trainer, SA, was quoted on numerous occasions "I am very concerned about RA's fitness", so why didn't JJ listen to the trainer?!?! What other great filly defeated top males and came back to win handily?? RA beat top males three times, and we expect her to be herself after seven uneven training sessions?? I love Zenyatta no doubt, but I adore RA as well. RA wasn't herself yesterday, and JJ may have killed the champion in her last year. Way to go JJ!!! · 2812 days ago
Being able to race in November but also have virtually no break in the action gives Zenyatta a huge edge. Rachel has been off since September with a rushed schedule. Makes a big difference.
I would like to see Rachel-Zenyatta meet when both are peaking. Zen is grooving and Rachel is not all the way back. At this point in the year the Apple Blossom would be a mismatch.
With a solid pace and a big run by Zardana, ultimately Rachel wasn't going to win this at 85% ready.
False favorite? Hardly. But a vulnerable favorite? For sure. False favorites are horses who shouldn't even be the favorite. Ultimately, that wasn't the Rachel we saw last year.
What was the big shock. RA missed a long work. Worked horrible 3 back and raced on a tiring track. She was a false favorite if there ever was. Besides, she isn't the true horse of the year and she's a miler. lol
Well, Asmussen certainly let everyone know that Rachel wasn't 100% fit. I guess he knew what he was talking about.

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