Rachel Alexandra rules the Woodward
Rachel Alexandra became a racing sensation on 16 May 2009, when she swept past her male counterparts at the prestigious Preakness Stakes and became the first filly since 1926, to win this leg of the Triple Crown. It was a momentous occasion not only for Rachel Alexandra and her connections, but for horse racing. A filly had arrived on the horse racing circuit that was taking the industry by storm. And on Saturday, 5 September 2009, the tension at the Woodward Stakes mounted, as everyone waited eagerly to see if Rachel Alexandra could again, be victorious against her male competitors.
The Woodward Stakes is a Grade 1 event that was hosted by the Saratoga Racecourse and had been a race that has been dominated by male horses since its inception fifty six years ago. Jess Jackson, co-owner of Rachel Alexandra, has been known to be very selective in regard to the race and track surfaces when it comes to his horses, and once again, the combination of the correct race and Rachel Alexandra’s unwavering determination resulted in victory.
It seems that Rachel Alexandra was also feeling the pressure a little before the race, when the crowd noise overwhelmed her during the post parade, which dismounted her jockey, Calvin Borel. But when the starting gates swung open, Rachel Alexandra and Borel got down to business, focusing on the race and their winning strategy. It was not an easy race for Rachel Alexandra, as Macho Again was not willing to give up. Both horses gave their best performances but Rachel Alexandra was able to hold onto the lead and win the Woodward Stakes by a head, adding her share of the $750 000 purse money to her career winnings. Rachel Alexandra and Macho Again were followed him by Bullsbay in third place.
To date, Rachel Alexandra has won a total of more than $2.9 million and has enjoyed eleven victories off fourteen career starts. In this last year she has blossomed and many believe that her most recent victory in the Woodward Stakes puts her in strong contention for the North American Horse of the Year title. Rachel Alexandra has proven that she is force to be reckoned with and she is not only winning hearts and races, but making history along the way.