Tuesday, Dec. 08, 2009

Phenomenal Filly

This gal's got game. Filly Rachel Alexandra is such a strong racehorse that jockey Calvin Borel, after winning the Kentucky Derby on Mine That Bird, decided to dump that colt before the Preakness Stakes and take a ride with Rachel instead. Borel was the first Derby-winning jockey in 134 years to race on a different horse for the Preakness, and the gamble paid off. Rachel Alexandra stayed wide on the outside and sped by all the boys, taking an early lead. She never tired and held off a furious push from Mine That Bird to win the race by a length, becoming the first filly in 85 years to take the Preakness. "She's the greatest racehorse I've seen in my life," said Borel, a 27-year pro. She sat out the Belmont Stakes to rest her legs but won the prestigious Haskell Invitational and Woodward Stakes later in the summer. Remarkably, Rachel Alexandra is just one of the female favorites for 2009 Horse of the Year. Another contender, Zenyatta, was the first mare to win the Breeders' Cup Classic in the 26-year history of that race, coming from way back in the pack to win by a length in thrilling fashion.