Saturday, November 7, 2009
A Filly Beats all the Boys in the Classic
Zenyatta won her 14th consecutive Race today in the Breeders' Cup Classic, running against a field of males. She began the Race on the wrong foot at the very back of the pack, but managed to beat all contenders.
Afterwards, the announcer asked her jockey, Mike Smith: 'Is she Horse of the Year?'
Mike Smith's response: 'She's 'Horse of the Decade'!'
The crowd went wild when she finished first. She had enchanted every one with her little dance steps in the paddock and on the way to the gate. Where other horses might be nervous, she obviously thrived on the attention of her audience and evidently this is always the case where she is concerned. Hundreds of pink placards declaring 'Girl Power!' lined the fence, their bearers cheering her on.
I myself was a little skeptical, although secretly I wanted her to win as well. After all, I am a Girl and I always like to see a female prove herself the equal of any male. In the past, however, far too many horses promoted as the upcoming 'Horse of the Year' before the Breeders' Cup proved to have feet of clay on the course.
It is not the horse alone who wins the race and Mike Smith was a perfect companion for this spirited filly, leading her to victory with consummate skill, but what impressed me most was his obvious affection for his mount.
Zenyatta has proven herself conclusively today at Santa Anita. If she never runs another race, she has claimed a place in the hearts of her audience.