Kentucky Oaks surprise
Being compared to a legend such as Secretariat is a huge compliment. Especially if the same features and greatness is seen in another equine athlete, that made horses like Secretariat untouchable in the world of horse racing. This weekend, a magnificent filly by the name of Rachel Alexandra, left spectators breathless, and lifelong horse racing supporters wondering if they are witnessing another legend in the making. During the running of the 135th Kentucky Oaks, at Churchill Downs, Rachel Alexandra exceeded all expectations.
Rachel Alexandra is a three year old filly that is owned by Dolphus Morrison and trained by Hal Wiggins. Before the Kentucky Oaks, Rachel Alexandra had successfully won her last four starts and had performed spectacularly in each of her racing events. Her victory at Churchill Downs on Friday, 1 May 2009, can only be described as historical and astounding, as she thundered her way to the finish line with a more than twenty length lead over her other contenders.
Grabby’s Golden Gal, trained by Bob Baffert held the lead until the far turn, after which Rachel Alexander made her move and no-one else was able to challenge her. Even Baffert felt compelled to comment on her performance, saying: “We saw greatness. You hate to get beat, but at least we can say we were the last filly who was in front of Rachel Alexandra turning for home." Stone Legacy finished in second place, with Flying Spur in third position. Rachel Alexandra will now be heading towards Belmont, to compete in the Acorn. Her jockey, Calvin Borel had only praise for his filly, announcing with confidence that, “If she stays sound, she'll be the next Secretariat.”
One thing remains certain; Rachel Alexander has immense talent, speed, strength and the capability to become the next horse racing hero. Although she seems able to take on her male competitors in bigger racing events, Morrison has no plans to race her in the Triple Crown or similar events. For now, they are taking is one race at a time, while Rachel Alexander continues to awe spectators, one astounding victory at a time.