Race of the Week 2017

Zenyatta Deserved 2009 Horse of the Year

You don't need to be a horse racing fan to make good use of a few minutes on a busy TV Saturday watching the magnificent Zenyatta.

The 6-year-old mare, the darling of thoroughbred racing fans in California — and many other places — will make her final start in California in Saturday's $250,000 Lady's Secret Stakes at Hollywood Park. She won the race in 2008 and 2009. ESPN will show the race at 7:15 p.m.

Zenyatta is undefeated in 18 career races, including last year's Breeders' Cup Classic.

The only knock on Zenyatta is that she's a synthetic-turf specialist and has run only twice outside California.
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Older Comments about Zenyatta Deserved 2009 Horse of the Year...

The Z fans started this bitter debate when they trashed RA for a well-deserved HOY title. RA's title was for 2009, not 2008 or 2010, and there's absolutely no doubt she deserved the award for probably the best racing season ever recorded for a 3yr-old filly. Sure, she crashed in 2010 and Z was clearly the better horse, but the award WAS FOR 2009! It isn't a lifetime achievment award, it's given based on the merits of one single racing season.
I don't fault people for choosing RA as horse of the year, what I don't understand is why Zenyatta has to be cheapened to a mediocore horse at best. 19 in a row with no blemishes is not easy on any surface and should be more than commended. Albeit the owners should have raced her outside of California on more than the few occasions they did; it wasn't her decision for the BC to be ran on synthetics two years in a row and RA owners didn't show up because of the surface. Now here we are, a year later @ Churchill Downs on Dirt and Rachel's retiring after bullet work outs and the comp seems to be dropping like flies. It's not like there ever was a race she could win and get respect.
Speaking of the '09 Horse of Year, Rachel Alexandra probably ran the weakest campaign of any defending HOY winner in 2010. What was Jess Jackson thinking?
WOW, when will you Zen people grow up. The correct horse won HOY. I never understood why Zenyatta was even in the mix. One trick pony. The knock on her about only running Cal on kitty litter is only the tip of the iceberg of a flawed campaign. She has never run in wind or mud, or heat, or against varied competition more then once. Has she ever even run on a cloudy day. What if it rains Nov 6th?? Then what. Get over yourselves. Zen is a terrific horse shame her connections aren't convinced. She runs on her track in ideal conditions this does not make a HOY
Listening to the comments made by 4horses is hilarious. Do you actually ready what you post or is it about trying to be right. What about Zenyatta's 2009 campaign out did Rachel, you make a comment that Rachel ran in the Preakness against horses that ran 2 weeks earlier in the Derby, you act as if Rachel had a month off, she ran the day before the derby and in that race won by 20 lengths. And as for Comment worthy races, the Oaks, the Mother Goose, the Preakness, the Haskell defeating the 3 year old champ by 6 on a surface he relished And did you forget that a 3 year old filly ran and won a route race in new york called the woodward, that is something no filly or mare has done in 57 runnings of the race. Again a 3 year old filly beating 5 and 6 year old older horses on DIRT.
I agree with md. He is only saying he made an error, and justifiably so. While Rachel had an excellent campaign in 2009, those of you who doubt Zenyatta's should take a moment to reflect. Yes Rachel did have more starts, therefore earning more wins, but in what? The Preakness where she ran against contenders who had only weeks prior run in another toll-taking race? Or the Woodward? Those are the only 2 comment worthy races in her starts in 2009. Zenyatta did have less starts but won impressively in the Classic against fresher horses. Look a little further back. Rachel did not win her maiden race and has not had a flawless career. Zenyatta not only boasts 1st finishes across the board, she has maintained her title in several races for the past 3 years. Now, let's look at this year. Where is your beloved Rachel? She has won 2 of 5 starts and is being retired humbly before smudging her career anymore. Zenyatta, however, has managed to become evermore impressive. Don't get me wrong, Rachel Alexandra is an incredible mare and worthy of votes for her coveted title, but the appropriate Queen has her crown and she have her deserved title along with it. There is no whining and crying here, only facts and credit where it is due. So please continue to argue in defense of something that is undeserved, for you obviously feel the need. But there are years of wins under one mares belt, versus one at-first-glance impressive year for another. Let's be real here. I fully support Zenyatta and will watch in awe when she defeats the boys yet another time. This is one for the history books.
Running surface aside, Goldikova is a more accomplished mare than both Zenyatta and Rachel. A three-peat in the BC Turf Mile would only seal the deal.
Nothing like revisiting history Matthews. Your first vote for RA was the right won. In your arguement why don't we make the phillies world champions, so what the yankees won. Lets also make the South the winner of the civil war. Why be rational about these things. RA's 2009 campaign was one for the ages while Z's was only ordinary. If not for the BC win there would have been any number of horses ranked ahead of her. One quality win does not make a champion. The right horse was horse of the year and do argue diifferently shows either bias total ignorance.
Cugel and others, you should take time to read an entire article before commenting. The writer actually touted Rachel for '09 HOY. He believes that he made an error. I also thought that Rachel deserved '09 HOY because of her aggressive campaign. I am also a Zenyatta fan and always believed that Z was the superior horse. For those always bashing Zenyatta...Her record is 19-for 19. What's yours?
teamo - if you think it's annoying to hear the Zenny fanboys complain about the 2009 HOY vote, just wait until Z finishes out of the money in this year's BCC. The pathetic whining and excuses coming from the zenyphiles will be deafening and pathetic!
I'm glad I don't spend all my time whining about what didn't happen in the past.

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