Visiting Zenyatta


Our vehicle, driven by David Ingordo, passed through the security gate and headed down a long tree-lined road. You could feel the anticipation. The image that came to mind was Dorothy and company heading down that long corridor to see the Wizard of Oz. Only this time there would be no shooting flames and deceptive illusions. There would be only Zenyatta, in the flesh, a million miles from the world she inhabited for the past three years.

The question on my mind was: how had one month of farm life affected her – physically and personality-wise?

As the road began to curve, leading toward the broodmare barn, four mares could be seen in a paddock, gathered alongside the fence. The hulking dark frame of one of them and the large splash of white on her face and two white hind legs made it clear even from a distance that it was Zenyatta. This time, however, there was no radiant glow or mystical aura around her, as there had been at Churchill Downs, Hollywood Park, and Keeneland; just a large mare in a large paddock silhouetted against the snow, apparently enjoying the company of her friends. All four cantered along close to the fence, never more than two or three feet from each other.

David’s truck stopped, and my wife and I got out and trudged through a patch of snow to the fence. There she was in all her glory, her head peering over the fence, as her buddies, Pirate Queen, Sea Gull, and Alys, trotted over as if joined at the hip.

At first, however, the scene seemed disjointed; not as it should be. Yes, this really is Zenyatta; it says so on her halter. And this is her world. There were no more photo sessions with people lined up to have their picture taken with her, no flowers, no cakes, no celebrations in front of tens of thousands of screaming fans, no heart-throbbing stretch runs, no tears of joy from people overcome with emotion just being in her presence.

Oprah, 60 Minutes, W Magazine are in the past. Although the term has been used on numerous occasions since her retirement, Zenyatta is now a horse, and from all appearances she is loving it.

Her once pronounced dapples still are trying to peek through her new winter coat. The look of awe on one’s face is still reflected in her eye.

My wife had never seen Zenyatta in person, so feeding her mints in her paddock and later in her stall was something special, although she had to wait patiently for over 20 minutes until Zenyatta finished her feed and then her alfalfa and Timothy hay in the opposite corner of the stall.

Along with her nameplate on the door, there is a pink and white sign resting on the ledge that reads: “The Queen Reigns Here.” Four nights later, she would be officially crowned with the Eclipse Award for Horse of the Year.

Zenyatta and her friends are brought in at 3 o’clock each afternoon, and the big mare seemed to sense the time as she began sauntering over to the gate, the others following. Then the foursome were led in the barn, with Zenyatta and her best friend, Pirate Queen, in front, followed by the two most recent arrivals to the royal paddock, Sea Gull and Alys. At one point, Zenyatta broke into one of her patented “dance” steps.

“Yep, she still dances,” said broodmare manager Charles Campbell. “But she hasn’t managed to teach the routine to the others yet.”

Zenyatta also has made friends with an 18-year-old cat named Ewok who spends a good deal of time roaming about in and above her stall.

Zenyatta has made great progress since her arrival at Lane’s End Farm last month.

“The thing that has slowed us down has been the weather,” said Campbell. “Thankfully, she handled the transition really well. Some horses will get hot in their stall if you don’t turn them out, but she was fine. She’s never turned a hair; she’s never fretted or gotten excited about anything. That’s probably because she was so well-handled at Barn 55.

“Since she’s been here she’s put on 150 pounds. Going into the breeding season you want them to be on a positive weight gain. That’s when their body will better adapt to getting in foal. You don’t want them fat and you don’t want them thin. She’s just a big, beautiful sleek lady.”

Farm manager Mike Cline added, “She was here a week or so before we could turn her out, because the weather was so bad, and we only hand-walked her. We started her out in a paddock by herself and kept in there for about 10 days to two weeks. When we first turned her out the first thing she did was jog over to the corner of the paddock and nicker at the mares next door. Then we introduced a buddy to her, Pirate Queen, who was pretty docile. We left them together for about a week, and then I had these other two maiden mares and put them with her, because I wanted to get her in a bigger field with more horses.

“Sometimes, if you only have one buddy and she goes to get bred, then you’re left by yourself; or if the blacksmith or vet comes, the other one has to wait for her to go out, so we wanted to get her in a small group. Horses figure out the pecking order based on a lot of different things. There’s only one water, so they have to figure out who gets to drink first and who’s the first one in the barn, and they’ll work all that stuff out.”

“Everything we’ve done has been pretty simple. I won’t kid you and say it hasn’t been a little stressful being responsible for letting her down. She hadn’t been in a paddock and turned loose since she was a young 2-year-old, but she handled it like a pro.”

Campbell said he enjoyed watching her buddy up with Pirate Queen. “Obviously, she had Life is Sweet and Harmonious in the barn, but she’d never had a one on one friendship, where it’s just the two of them out in a paddock,” he said. “To see her go from living life on her own to having a buddy was quite a lot of fun. She was squealing while she was getting to know her new friend. We just looked for quiet mares. We didn’t want any dominant mares going in there with her. We wanted to leave her and Pirate Queen together for a couple of weeks to make sure they had a real strong friendship before we put the other two with them.”  

Zenyatta also has undergone a major transition in regard to the men in her life. Two months ago, she was eyeballing hunks like Blame and Lookin at Lucky in competition. Now, her only encounter with the opposite sex is a visit from a teaser named Capone, who has come to the barn 14 to 15 times already, arriving at 5 a.m. when the mares are calm and quiet after their 4:30 feeding. Capone will walk down the barn and, as Campbell puts it, “talk” to each mare individually for about a minute. If a mare needs a little more interaction, Campbell will slide the stall door open and let them touch noses. Zenyatta, however, has a cut-out screen, so her head is already out. As expected, she has been a gracious hostess, never pinning her ears or showing signs of wanting to kick, and has accepted all of Capone’s advances in style.

So far, everything has gone perfectly in regard to Zenyatta becoming a broodmare.

“There was a little concern at first, because she’s 6, and for as long as she was on the racetrack, you want to make sure she’s perfectly normal from a reproductive standpoint,” Cline said. “She was in heat shortly after she got here. We’ve already gotten a uterine culture on her. We palpated her a few times and she’s making nice big viable follicles. After the brain trust decides who they’re breeding her to we’ll get started on that around the end of February.”

Zenyatta’s daily routine is pretty simple. Campbell arrives at about 5 a.m. and oversees the visit from the teaser. The help arrive at 7 and turn out the mares and muck the stalls. Prior to that, the repro vets, Drs. Richard Holder and Ernie Martinez will come to get cultures, but not from Zenyatta.

“We’ve had two clean cultures from Zenyatta,” Campbell said. “Normally, it’s just one culture on a maiden, but we leave nothing to chance with this mare, so we double check everything. They’ve scanned her and ultra-sounded her and she has two good ovaries.”

The mares will stay out until 3 o’clock. Zenyatta loves rolling in the dirt and will often come in covered head to toe in mud. After feeding, in which she has Guinness poured over her food, she’ll be done up by the grooms. Of course, she gets her carrots and mints throughout the day, as well as a banana in the morning.

Zenyatta eats 12 to 14 quarts of feed daily, and Campbell has followed Shirreffs’ routine of feeding her several times a day.

“Because she’s so big, she eats a lot of food, and you don’t want to give her too much at one time,” Campbell said. “Getting a horse from John is great, because he’s strictly, hay, oats, and water. There isn’t anything in the horse that’s not natural or beneficial. Some horses from other trainers are so masculine and fired up, but this girl is fantastic. So, hopefully, things will go well, as they did for Life is Sweet, and there will be a baby Zenyatta.”

Campbell feels fortunate to have such a talented, devoted staff behind him. “I have the best staff any manager could ever ask for, including a great assistant in Donna Vowles,” he said. “They’re incredible. As soon as the news was out that Zenyatta was coming, the first question everyone asked was, ‘What barn is she going in?’ As soon as they found out, they were all lining up to work in the barn.”

Campbell, who is 26, was born in England and received his degree in biochemistry (studying reproduction, genetics, and physiology) at the University of Wales. He also has studied entomology, parastitology, and habitat, giving him a well-rounded background. After school, he went to work for his parents, who break and train horses, but after a year he wanted to see the world and learn as much as he could about horses, so he went to South Africa, where he worked as an assistant yearling manager. He met Tom Goff of Blandford Bloodstock, who advised him to come to America, so he obtained a one-year visa with the intention of mucking out as many stalls as he could until he got his big break. Now, 3 1/2 years later, here he is in charge of 187 mares, including arguably the most famous horse in the world, at one of the industry’s great breeding establishments.

“I’ve just been the luckiest person to be in the right place at the right time,” he said. “I’m 26, and people wait a lifetime to get a horse like Zenyatta. When I found out she was coming here I rang my mother, I rang my nana, I rang my grandfather. My grandparents are dairy farmers, and my grandfather is nearly deaf, so I’m screaming into the phone, ‘Zenyatta is coming to the farm!’ and he says, ‘Is that a new stallion?’”

It is apparent that Zenyatta still possesses the power to make grownups feel like kids.

“We had two of our managers from our Oak Tree division, Callan Strouss and Curt Ramsey, in the office for a meeting one day,” Campbell said. “They have 60 years in the business between them, but they snuck over here to see Zenyatta and went in her stall with their cameras, going, ‘Take a picture of me.’ And all the while they’re laughing and giggling like little kids.”

Lane’s End is still in the process of coming up with plan to accommodate the public, as far as visitation, but their main priority right now is getting Zenyatta in foal.

“We tried to diffuse that a little by having her go to Keeneland and letting the fans get close to her,” Cline said. “In addition she has her own website and Facebook page, where people can go and see paddock scenes of her through photos and videos. We’ve done what we could to try to keep people involved with how’s she’s doing and make sure they’re comfortable with where she’s at. Of course, we have tons of people who want to come see her, but we made a plan to restrict that to some degree in the beginning to make sure she had a chance to acclimate and we weren’t always dragging her in to be cleaned up and looked at. We have to be sensitive to what’s best for her and we feel like we’re doing that. We’ll come up with a mix of what’s fair and what needs to be done.”

Campbell said there are also other concerns to deal with. “My biggest concern from a managerial standpoint is if anyone comes here who has been on a farm that’s had strangles or Herpes virus or any of those airborne diseases and she gets it, it’s instant abortion. That would be the most devastating thing to the fans. They need to understand that as much as we’d love to have people come out to see her, we have to think of the horse. In the future, we’ll try to find a fine balance.”

Ingordo added, “We hope her fans understand that we have to get her in foal before we do anything. It’s not like a stallion where you know their schedule. We did have one person come visit her from “Make-a-Wish,” who is terminally ill, and one of the things he wanted to do was see Zenyatta.

“She still has a lot of her personality and loves to see people. But now she’s become used to being more of a horse, and she likes it. Candidly, it looked to me watching her on TV at Hollywood Park recently that she knew it was time to get off the stage.”

When she did exit the stage, she left behind a spotlight that although empty will forever glow with the memory of her triumphs, not only on the racetrack, but in the hearts of all those she touched so deeply. Although no one can get inside a horse’s head, it sure appeared during the short time we visited that Zenyatta is enjoying her new life and her new friends – human, equine, and feline.

Yes, Zenyatta is now a horse.

But what a horse!

 
Our first glimpse of Zenyatta


Zenyatta and her buddy, Pirate Queen.
 

Zenyatta still enjoys her mints
 

Zenyatta still shows off that step as she's led back to the barn with Pirate Queen
 

Zenyatta with her founding father and chief overseer David Ingordo
 

Zenyatta gets plenty of TLC from broodmare manager Charles Campbell
 

Returning to the barn on a peaceful winter afternoon


 



469 Comments

Leave a Comment:

Mary Zinke

Thank you, Mr. Haskin for sharing your visit with the 2010 Horse Of The Year Zenyatta. Lane's End is a wonderful new home for Zenyatta and her future foal.

18 Jan 2011 1:02 AM
needler in Virginia

Oh, well done you!! Lovely piece, and EXACTLY what a lot of folks needed, Steve. Her ears are still "happy", her buddy looks comfortable, SHE looks comfortable, and I'm glad to hear that Lane's End knows what kind of hurricane they're riding. The part about the transmission of "bugs" from one farm to another is a very real concern, and I hope those who wander around to see her will realize that. Since most fans already know her poop schedule, they most likely will understand.

YOU ARE SO LUCKY, and I love the pictures. Welcome back, thanks for this lovely news and didn't you time this column just perfectly???

By the way, congratulations to Team Zenyatta for all they have done with this miracle in horseflesh.

Cheers and safe trips.

18 Jan 2011 1:05 AM
mary glynn

Mr. Haskin's Once again you transport me to another place and what a lovely journey! I am so happy that Zenyatta is a happy Horse! She looks Wonderful and It is so nice to see her in a pasture with a friend. Also nice to know that the Lane's end folks understand and want to educate her fans that is different with a race mare than a stallion. While we may have to wait to go and see her just having print media and her web sites to keep us connected to this wonderful gift . She deserves to have a lovely life full of pasture pals, sweet talking beau's and Barn Cats  and safe delivery's of beautiful foal's .

18 Jan 2011 1:14 AM
GJU

Ahhh, Steve! What a great way to end my night. With one of your great pieces, INCLUDING PICTURES, thank you very much, on my favorite horse and the 2010 Horse Of The Year, Zenyatta. My favorite line is "The look of awe on one’s face is still reflected in her eye". That gives me shivers!

Interesting point about people having airborne diseases she could catch. Wow, there sure is a lot that goes into taking care of a broodmare. But, I loved your blog and the pictures with captions...and right on the heels of hearing of Z winning HOTY! I'm drowning in the world of Zenyatta and I love it. Thanks for another awesome piece.

18 Jan 2011 1:17 AM
Tamara G

Was waiting for your article on your visit and it was well worth the wait! Such a happy day with The Queen winning the top honors of the year. Thank you very much

18 Jan 2011 1:18 AM
Primadex

Bless you for the lovely gift of this "visit," Steve.

18 Jan 2011 1:22 AM
Flora

Thanks so much for the update, Steve. I am so glad that she is enjoying her now life and is surrounded by people who care about her so much, just as in her old barn. She looks as though she is really happy to have a buddy too!

18 Jan 2011 1:41 AM
Dona

Wonderful piece Steve,

I read it out loud over the phone to a friend of mine that's temporarily computer poor, her lap top died, and I recommend doing that for every one because you instantly share laughter and smiley faces. Especially loved it when Steve says "she still dances but hasn't taught the rest of them the routine". Priceless!

What did your wife think of Zenyatta and has she forgiven you for loving the Queen, or does she totally understand, my friend wanted to know. I wasn't sure.

Well, she now has the Honor of being Horse Of The Year, so we can relax and get back to the humdrum of everyday living but knowing History will judge her as she should be. Among the very best, ever.

Welcome back, Steve.

18 Jan 2011 1:43 AM
Dona

Forgot to tell you, you give good photo!

18 Jan 2011 1:45 AM
Karen Lamb

Thank you Steve! I am a 66 year old retired one-room school teacher and I live on a small island in Washington with my husband. TVG and Zenyatta and Bloodhorse have become my favorite hobbies and now I am quite lonesome to see her and know how she is doing.  Bless you for keeping us informed....we the public who love her.

18 Jan 2011 1:50 AM
Josie

You did a great job on this story. Thanks for sharing.  

18 Jan 2011 1:53 AM
Between Friends

Your column was definitely worth the wait. Thank you for taking us along on your visit with the 2010 Horse of the Year. (Don't you love the sound of that description of the Queen?) Seeing her through your eyes and your words puts us as close as we possibly could get without actually being there ourselves. And thank you for all the photos. Zenyatta looks so happy. She again is surrounded by some very wonderful people who have become part of Team Zenyatta. And she very much deserves all of this attention. She is a once in a lifetime horse.

18 Jan 2011 1:53 AM
Maria K.

Mr. Haskin, Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful visit with Zenyatta.  Definitely, she touched the heart of so many racing fans.  I am so glad that this GREAST mare finally won the HOY.

18 Jan 2011 2:03 AM
diastu

Too wound up from HOY to sleep so have been visiting my favorite Z sites and bogs. Thank you Steve for your reassuring update on her status and condition, and the lovely photos. She looks peaceful in her paddock with her friends. She is a jewel and a national treasure, so I can imagine the pressure at Lane's End! All of us Zenyatta-holics will so miss her racing, but your observations are trusted and welcome. [You lucky dog!] I think I can sleep now, but have added seeing her in person one more time to my "bucket list". Congratulations to all of her human family who have shared her, and themselves, with all of us! Health and blessings to them, you, and all of her fans. Diana in Phoenix

18 Jan 2011 2:14 AM
Freetex

Love, love, love the article, the photos, and The Horse of The Year, Zenyatta.

John Sherriff did give Zenyayya remarkable foundation for a super star career and a bountiful life.  She is indeed a gift, a very special gift.

How great to see her be horse and living with her new friends.  What a treasure she is Steve, and oh yes, what a horse!

Thank you for your words, lovely words.

18 Jan 2011 2:23 AM
Karey

Thank you yet again, Mr. Haskin. The information you gather and the insights you share about our beloved Zenyatta are very much appreciated. You have a way of telling us exactly what we'd like to know. (Wasn't it a splendid evening at Eclipse!)

18 Jan 2011 2:38 AM
Kathryn

Please just make it clear to the fan base exactly what Charles Campbell states here:  a guest coming in from another farm or a barn with strangles or Herpes virus or any of the airborne viruses means instant abortion.  Her many admirers want to be educated about all things Zenyatta & horses generally; they are bright and they care about this mare.  Just treat them like grown-ups; they`re willing to give her the best they have and that might mean being free of them if it`s unsafe for her.  

18 Jan 2011 3:54 AM
Princess Dearinger

I have never been forunate enough to go a race but I have heard about Zenyatta, and I have to say just reading about her sends chills all through me, to see the gentleness in her eyes in these photo's and to see the Honor and Pride that she carries herself with,  I am in awe of this mare, she is truely an amazing Horse.

18 Jan 2011 4:35 AM
Zen4Zen

Thanks so much, Steve, for your lovely and eagerly-anticipated story about your visit with the great Zenyatta at Lane's End.  It's so reassuring to hear from you how well she's doing.  Your details about things like her friendship with Pirate Queen bring us closer to her -- and make us appreciate you all the more!

How fitting and serendipitous that the account of your visit with "the Queen" is posted just a few hours after she was named Horse of the Year!

Many thanks again, and may the horse (every horse you love) be with you, in spirit if not in the flesh!

18 Jan 2011 5:32 AM
Rachel

Sweet story of the "gal pals"...they're all so special in their own right, aren't they?

PS It's more appropriate to say "trademark dance steps" as opposed to "patented", it's OK, you are by no means the only sports person using the analogy, who knows, maybe they did apply for a patent!;-)

18 Jan 2011 5:37 AM
Pat

Good morning, Steve. I wasn't able to watch the Eclipse Awards live and decided to put off checking either email for headlines or BH for the full stories of last night's results. This morning, the headline announcing that Zenyatta had won the 2010 Horse of the Year, started off my day much better than that first cup of coffee. Now this most wonderfully-written piece about the visit that you and your wife took recently to visit Zenyatta...icing on the cake. It's great that you could share that experience with someone you love so much. I've made a binder for Zenyatta, containing all of her photos and records of her accomplishments. This piece, deservedly-so, will go in there as well. Thanks Steve, for making my day and for bringing Zenyatta closer to all of us.

18 Jan 2011 5:56 AM
Della

Magical, Steve, as always. You took me right to Lanes End.  Many thanks for an excellent article.

18 Jan 2011 6:06 AM
PomDeTerre

Great story and photos.  Thank you.  Congratulations to Zenyatta & team for HOTY, finally.  Now all she needs is a little prince or princess.

18 Jan 2011 6:48 AM
Barb

Another wonderful article. It made me laugh and smile with joy and yes, even tears.  Just can't stop the flow!  When I first saw Z in person, I felt something special about her, like everyone else.  She has become a "healing horse" to so many of her fans.  It's wonderful to hear she is doing so well with "just being a horse".  I think she just loves everyone, like you said, "human, equine and feline"! (I just loved the part about Charles Campbell's grandfather, I can relate.) Thanks!

18 Jan 2011 6:49 AM
Marci

This is a glorious day!!!! She won!!!! The article was great, Steve. Thank you!

18 Jan 2011 7:13 AM
Sue

Steve...just another great piece of writing.  Thank you for giving us a glimpse into Zenyatta's new life.  She is HOY!  Finally TPTB know and understand who she is, what she has accomplished and what she means to racing at large.  I love how comments are made about her Barn 55 team...they allowed her to be herself and that in itself is perhaps the greatest blessing.  Will we ever see another like her?  Not likely.  Like Mike Smith said she is a gift from God.  Her beauty humbles me.  The pictures are spectacular just like the Queen herself.

18 Jan 2011 7:27 AM
Zen Bones

Thanks so much, Steve, for allowing us to truly appreciate the process that Zenyatta is going through.  What could be more magical than becoming...a HORSE!!!  It's also reassuring to know she is in very good hands and that plans for allowing us to see her will revolve around what is best for her.  Your summary of her accomplishments in your HOY article is also outstanding.  It's so easy to think what she did was ordinary, because she made it look so easy.  But her whole life to this point has been extraordinary.  And even as she returns to a normal life as a horse, I'm sure her magic will never fade

18 Jan 2011 7:28 AM
Lindsey S

What a great article, Steve!  I'm so very glad that she seems to be settling in so well at Lane's End.  I was so thrilled for her, the connections, and all of us crazy fans when she won last night!  It was such a relief that she got what she so richly deserved!  I know they have to do what's right for her, but I sure do want to see her someday!  I was at Keeneland when she arrived, but I didn't get a chance to touch her. It was like we were all waiting for a rockstar to arrive!  I'm looking forward to the announcement of her future mate soon.  My money is on A.P. Indy...just my gut feeling.

18 Jan 2011 7:31 AM
Cheryl Denton

Thank you Steve!  What a great way to start off my day after an exciting and most gratifying evening watching the Eclipse Awards. Zenyatta sure makes *this* grown-up feel like a kid, and that is such a good thing. My faith in racing is secure and I look forward to an exciting 2011 with the promise of a beautiful foal by Zenyatta's side. I have loved many racehorses over the years, but none have captured my heart and soul like this wonderful mare.  

18 Jan 2011 7:59 AM
Patti

Thank you for such a wonderful visit with the Horse of the Year! I think she is magnificent! She will make beautiful, sound babies I am sure. My vote for daddy is Curlin!

18 Jan 2011 7:59 AM
wee-o

Steve, thank you.  Great article about our HOY and the special treatment and care she is getting.  And yes we wait for the daily posts and any word about her.  Keep us posted.

18 Jan 2011 8:01 AM
Love 'em all

Wow! What a way to start the day!  Woke up hearing the news on ESPN of Zenyatta winning HOTY (had fallen asleep earlier watching tennis)... then, got online and read Mr. Haskin's story visiting Zenyatta.  Thank you!  

Felt like I was along for the visit too!  So happy for you and your wife to have made the trip, and thank you for sharing all the wonderful pics.  Oh happy day!

18 Jan 2011 8:09 AM
Fran Loszynski

Awesome photos Steve. Touching to show her with her pal Pirate Queen. And now she is Horse of The Year. Well-deserved. I hope someday when you visit Afleet Alex and Afleet Express we can view those pics too. I have some that I will always keep close to my heart of Alex.  Looking to Elite Alex to bring it home this season. Once again thank you for the beautiful photos of the Great Zen. You better get your camera ready for her first foal because I expect you to take it and write about her.Notice I wrote "her" hmmm, maybe a little ESP! Congrats to the Moss's, when you love a racehorse it is forever and only happiness surrounds you. Zenyatta knew they were on the rail with beating hearts- she won for them.

18 Jan 2011 8:20 AM
Henley

What a great insight! Thank you! :)

18 Jan 2011 8:34 AM
Mary Jo

Thank you for a lovely story. It was especially heartwarming to learn about Charles calling everyone, including his nana to tell them that Zenyatta was coming. As her fan, I wanted to know that those who would receive her would be as excited about her as I and so many thousands.  She's a once in a lifetime horse and I can't wait to see her first foal!  God bless Team Zenyatta...CA & KY combined. She is in the best of care! Congratulations on Horse of the Year.  It's an understatement but we'll take it!  :)  

18 Jan 2011 8:38 AM
Don from PA/DE

Wonderful write up Steve, you were given the great story, and you sure hit the finish line running, thanks so much, Zen is a true champ and beauty....Don

18 Jan 2011 8:42 AM
Beverly

Congratulations Zenyatta!!!! Horse of the Year!!!   They finally got it right this year.

I loved reading your article and keeping us updated on her and her activities.  Will look forward to follow ups from you in the future.

Thanks

18 Jan 2011 8:55 AM
Maria

Thank you Steve! I LOVE reading your work! No doubt we'll never get enough of this wonderful mare and the story will simply continue. Looking forward to reading your next piece.

Maria

18 Jan 2011 8:58 AM
Slew

Steve, I think...no...I know I love you and your tender way with words...Thank you for a lovely poem to a gracious queen...and congratulations to Zenyatta for HOY!  The photos are amazing!

18 Jan 2011 9:00 AM
Sue M

Hi Steve, great article (as always)! I'm thrilled she won HOTY last night, but even happier that she seems so healthy and calm, out of the spotlight and loving it. I know it's nearly impossible for the greats to recreate themselves, but I will still be excited when her first foal is on the track, I won't be able to help myself!

Thanks for the pictures, too. In the meantime, I'm watching The Factor, Uncle Mo and Turbulent Descent (among others) and anticipating a great year of racing. Too bad about Awesome Feather, I was looking forward to her 3 year-old follow-up. I hope she can get back to the track. I heard it was a tendon issue, do you anything about it? (the seriousness, long-term prognosis, etc.)

Thanks again for the update.

18 Jan 2011 9:05 AM
Jenna M

Oh my gosh. What a beautiful story and article. I've been waiting for your wonderuful words since Christmas. What a wonderful life Zenyatta is going to have. Although I'm a 'feeler' and whine about her being in foal constantly, I really don't think that will necessarily be the case. After seeing the Mosses on the awards last evening, I see a love like no other. They truly love Zenyatta. I see her new coat coming through, even though she's dark in the photos. I still miss her so much...but I'm thinking she's loving her new life. Thank you so much!

18 Jan 2011 9:09 AM
longwaytomay

Steve,

 Thank you!! Nice to see her doing so well in her new surroundings. Do you have a guess as to who they are going to breed her to?

18 Jan 2011 9:11 AM
Judy Sims

Another great article by Mr. Haskins. He really knows how to capture the "heart" of the story and the fans of the Great Zenyatta. I have to stop typing while I wipe the tears away. Tears of joy for our HOTY and some saddness that her racing days are over. She gave us all the ride of a lifetime.

18 Jan 2011 9:12 AM
Bellwether

THATS THE HOOK!!!...HORSES BRING OUT THE PETER PAN & TINKER BELL N ALL OF US...ty...

18 Jan 2011 9:15 AM
Sue Byrd

Great article.  Good to see she's adapting well.  Miss her on the race track but hopefully she will make great foals.  Not with Curlin I hope.

18 Jan 2011 9:16 AM
Dawn

Another great article!!

I enjoyed reading about Zenyatta's new routine.  Also, thank you for mentioning the future possibility of fan visits.  Obviously the health of Zenyatta and her unborn foal is priority.  I'm sure Lane's End will find the right solution.  Also, wonderful photos, Thank you!!

18 Jan 2011 9:22 AM
ILVSLEW

Steve, thanks for wonderful stories and great photos...I hope to see her there this spring or early summer...I am so glad she won HOTY last night. I had cried so hard because I knew she did it, and was happy for Team Zenyatta, her fans, and all of these people who love her very much. GOD truly bless you all, and Zenyatta!! BIG HUGS...:)

18 Jan 2011 9:25 AM
marti

Congratulations on your win ! In my book, you're Horse of the Century ! Best to all.

18 Jan 2011 9:26 AM
M-D

Wonderful, wonderful, Mr & Mrs Haskin!

Thank you...& Pirate Queen is beautiful too--& appears to adore Zenyatta.

Zenyatta...has been served well & "let down" in a wonderful & caring way & I am so very happy that she has a good friend--& sincerely hope that Pirate Queen will not be separated from her (if for some reason Pirate Queen does not "produce" or is "sold" or suffers some other untoward fate all too common in the "breeding industry").

However, I do not for a second believe that the concentrated feed that Zenyatta received while in racing--or at Lane's end, was/is nothing more than oats.

More than likely a commercially prepared concentrated feed combining oats & other grains with vitamin & mineral supplements.

18 Jan 2011 9:27 AM
Jenna M

Since I'm not a horse person: Will her personality change completely? Once she is really living the life of a horse, will she lose that closeness and interest she had in people? You mentioned on Facebook that she wasn't as huggable. How will that translate in the coming days and years? Thank you.

18 Jan 2011 9:31 AM
Tanza

Great to see her being able to just be a horse... and she seems to enjoy it... the fact that so far it seems that all things are normal and a go for breeding yet again goes to the care by her crew in California.  Can't wait to hear who they select as a stallion... and I wonder???  Do you think they will need a "step ladder" for her mate to be???  Not many stallions are even close to her size..

And the voters got it right last night, Blame is a good horse and deserving, but Zenyatta is the Queen and deserved the HOY honor!

18 Jan 2011 9:35 AM
txhorsefan

Wow.  Steve, just Wow.  You promised us a report on your visit with Zenyatta and you delivered big time because your text and photos are wonderful.  We have been waiting to hear through your expert eyes how Zenyatta's transition was going and from all I can grasp so far is she is coming along very well.  No, the fanfare is not there, but she is still Zenyatta and she is being a horse as it should be after all she has given us for these last few years.  Lane's End is taking their responsibility very seriously and taking their time with her and that sounds so fabulous to me.  If she is not as affectionate with people now as she was when she was racing, isn't it probably because she is now having the opportunity to discover other facets of her personality and how to relate to other horses as well as to people?  I still sincerely hope that Lane's End will be able to allow people to visit her, but maybe it won't be as a one on one, picture taking basis...I'd be happy to just get close to her paddock and watch her graze with her band of friends without having to use binoculars to see her - lol!  

You are the best, Steve.  I'm glad Joan finally had an opportunity to get to meet Zenyatta, too.  I wish I could better express how your reassuring article has satisfied and gladdened my heart.  Thank you sincerely.  

18 Jan 2011 9:36 AM
wildblueroan

Ah, you've gone and done it again-moved me to tears over my morning coffee. And on this special morning- when we can finally bask in the afterglow of her amazing career feeling the arc is complete. Thank you for giving us this gift to mark the occasion.

18 Jan 2011 9:37 AM
Jenn

As always, a pleasure to read your blog!  Thank you for giving us a further peek into how Z is doing.  As much as I loved her on the track, it is so nice seeing her being just a horse and having horsey friends to pal around with.  Just a horse, but what a horse indeed!!

Congrats to the Z team on HOY too!!!!  Well done!!

Steve - if you see her again, give her a mint for me, ok? :)

Jenn Conway

Ontario, Canada

18 Jan 2011 9:37 AM
JoyinVT

What a great article. Thank you. Zenyatta is such a gift to us. Thank you to her wonderful connections who have always put her first and for sharing her with us. It is very little to ask of us to always act in the best interests of her health. We will so appreciate hearing about her and seeing her photos. None of us would ever want to do anything that could put her in harm's way. Congratulations to The Queen and her connections. JoyinVT

18 Jan 2011 9:39 AM
Joani

Thank you so much Steve! Wonderful write up and beautiful pictures!You touched on everything we'd want to know! Next best thing to being there myself!And now shes's 2010 HOTY!! Yessssss!!

18 Jan 2011 9:41 AM
Kat- Big Red's Biggest Fan

wishing I was there with you

18 Jan 2011 9:41 AM
Stephanie Q

Great Article!! Thanks for the information! Please keep up the great work! The pictures are so awesome as well!

18 Jan 2011 9:45 AM
joe c.

A very nice read the morning after her deserved HOY win.  These transitions are always tinged with sadness-for me when Seattle Slew left for the breeding shed in 1978 at the top of his game-but team Zenyatta can be proud she retired sound and healthy; here's to many more years of dancing and health!

18 Jan 2011 9:45 AM
S.L.Kidman

Steve:

I so enjoy reading your articles on Zenyatta!  You have such a wonderful flare in expressing thoughts in writing!  I am so appreciative of it!  REDEMPTION was never sweeter when I watched the Eclipse Awards last night and screamed when she won HORSE of the YEAR!  Well deserved award and she truly is one for the ages!  Again, Thanks so much for sharing the photos of your trip!  I hope to see her in March, fingers crossed!!

18 Jan 2011 9:49 AM
DBH

Gorgeous girl !  

Thank you for the update !

18 Jan 2011 9:51 AM
Liz Mahoney

Great reading! Love to read any and all Zenyatta. Wonderful photos!

Happy to know the Queen is enjoying her new life!

18 Jan 2011 9:55 AM
norma desmond

Dear Steve thank you so much for all your wonderful articles.  I traveled from New Orleans to Louisville alone on a Greyhound bus to attend the Breeder's Cup races and see Zenyatta. November 6th was the most exciting day of my life.  I do hope I will someday get an opportunity to see her again. I know there are many fans like me, people who are not in the racing industry, who just love Zenyatta. Long live the Queen.

18 Jan 2011 9:56 AM
cher

FABULOUS bit, thank you so much.

18 Jan 2011 9:57 AM
OldDog

Very nice, Steve.  Thanks!

18 Jan 2011 9:57 AM
Mj Hawk

That's about as good as it gets. Great story, Steve. She's been well-prepared for this her whole life.  She's lived on hay, oats and water, the love and kindness of enraptured humans, and a patient trainer who waited a year and a half to race her.  

And now we know she won her last race - HOTY - coming from behind as usual, just getting up in a squeaker.  

18 Jan 2011 9:58 AM
Tricia Smarty

Thank you so much for the wonderful article, Steve.  It is so nice to get a little better understanding of her life, other than from the horses mouth.  I am thrilled to death that she got that award last night.  They finally got it right.  Long Live the Queen!!!  

18 Jan 2011 10:01 AM
Countffleet 43

I wish her good Health & many sound Foals. I've been to Lane's End, Beautiful-Beautiful Farm with Great Stallions, especially AP Indy.

18 Jan 2011 10:04 AM
Kathleen Wiltsey

AWESOME STORY STEVE!! SO INTERESTING AND AS USUAL BROUGHT TEARS TO MY EYES! WERE YOU AT THE ECLIPSE AWARDS TO SEE HER CROWNED HORSE OF THE YEAR? SHE IS SO DESERVING AS IS THE WHOLE ZENYATTA TEAM!THANKS FOR THE WONDERFUL PICTURES AND MOVING NARRATIVE !

18 Jan 2011 10:05 AM
Barthart

Steve, Thank you so much for the wonderful and, as always, heartwarming story on Zenyatta. I was thrilled beyond words when I saw on Bloodhorse last night that she had at last been named Horse of the Year. What an amazing gift she has been to all of us. There may never be another like her!! Thanks again--I keep all of your Zenyatta articles and print them for my Z scrapbook.

18 Jan 2011 10:06 AM
Tracy

This will be her first day out in her paddock as 2010 HOTY!!!!

18 Jan 2011 10:06 AM
Sue Fredrick

Wow, she sure looks happy! I just knew Lane's End would give her the best treatment after visiting their fabulous facility in November and getting to meet my guy, A P Indy. She still has her special people to cater to her needs, with affection, and plenty of knowledge, and she gets to be a horse with her own friends. Love it! Kudos to you all and thanks for the great article.

18 Jan 2011 10:09 AM
tbpartnerperson43

That was lovely, Steve.  Thanks so much.  I follow Zenyatta's website every day, but it was nice to hear your impressions.  It was also good to hear from Charles Campbell.  It makes some things much clearer with regards to getting the mare in foal.  The pictures were terrific.  Now we just have to wait for the big announcement.  

18 Jan 2011 10:10 AM
denise babjack

What beautiful photos. Pirate Queen is real pretty. How is Life is Sweet doing?

18 Jan 2011 10:11 AM
denisebabjack

What beautiful pictures. Congratulations Queen on HOTY! Pirate Queen is real pretty. Also, how is Life is Sweet doing?

18 Jan 2011 10:14 AM
Jack & Diane

Thank you. It's just what we needed after last night.

18 Jan 2011 10:14 AM
AZLee

Thank you Steve for another wonderful interview.. and your visit with Zenyatta, now Horse of the Year 2010. Your last words, "now she is a horse"  put all her fans at rest.  Thanks for explaining the procedure she will have to go through  before she is ready to be bred.  Also thanks for the great photos with the Queen.  Now let her be a good happy horse.

18 Jan 2011 10:15 AM
figaro

For those of us who might never be lucky enough to see the Queen in person, thank you.

18 Jan 2011 10:17 AM
Rita

Very informative, this was very good.  It is good to have an idea of what happens when a famous female horse goes to become a Broodmare.  Whether the horse is Zenyatta or Peppers Pride they all go down the same "paddock" so to speak.  Also to bring to light why it is not good to have visitors as we can carry "stuff" with us that could affect their health. Thanks Steve for your wonderful articles & your special way of putting it in words.

18 Jan 2011 10:21 AM
Mallory

Steve, thank you so much for this! The insight into the barn staff is also appreciated; she is so well cared for, as is the rest of her new-found herd!

Kudos to the Mosses, the Sherriffs, and Lane's End for keeping the Queen happy, healthy and living the life of a truly gifted horse!

18 Jan 2011 10:21 AM
Cris

Thanks for the update. Great pictures, so glad to see that she has her buddy. I bet the owners fly over and show her the award.

Great to know she is doing so well and how could she not when she still gets her Guinness at dinnertime? She reminds me of an aunt that you love that has her little nip once a day.

18 Jan 2011 10:22 AM
KimberlyMP

Steve, you always hit a home run. Great story about Zenyatta, especially fun enjoyable today in light of her Eclipse Award. I'm glad to see Z is happily adapting to be a regular horse, and that she is still surrounded by people who treasure her.

18 Jan 2011 10:22 AM
RGGC

Thank you Steve for another great article. I got up this morning with a song in my heart since Z got her just rewards and your article was the icing on the cake!

Glad you and your wife enjoyed your visit. Hope to get to write my own story one day when I see her in person in the unkown future.

18 Jan 2011 10:27 AM
NancyP

Good Morning Steve,

As always, Thank You for this beautifully written heartfelt article about our Beautiful Horse Of The Year Zenyatta!  Stated by Charles Campbell and reported by you '...She Is a Big Beautiful Sleek Lady.' Amen!

Tears came to my eyes in the paragraph about how John Sheriffs cared for her physically and without chemicals while she was in his care.  He should have been voted Trainer of the Year, if not the decade and for all time!  That was one Fabulous Team Zenyatta!

It was reassuring to read of Campbell's credentials and how excited he was to receive Zenyatta in his care, that he called all his immediate family members with the news.  It is obvious to me now, that he loves her and will look to all her needs with utmost care.  Yes, she has the power, beauty and intelligence to make us all feel like kids again and probably always will - she has that presence.

As much as I'm dying to see her in the flesh for the first time, I was glad and appreciative to read their thinking first of her well-being and health by limiting our access to her until the time is right for her.  I check all web-sites, as well as hers, for news almost every day.

I really do miss her and thank you from the bottom of my heart for your kind and thoughtful articles about her.

Stay well!  I'm wishing you and your family a Healthy and Joyful 2011!

Best,

NancyP

18 Jan 2011 10:27 AM
Slang

Thanks Steve for your update on the Queen. I am sure that I wasn't the only one with tears in my eyes last night when it was announced that she won HOY. She has done so much for horse racing. She is such a wonder. There seems to be a calmness to her now and that's a good thing. I think people will adore her for a long time. I know I will.

18 Jan 2011 10:29 AM
Diane J

Thanks for the udpate, Steve!  I like the quote about "hay, oats, and water"  - if only all trainers did the same for their horses, we might have better health/longevity with the horses.

18 Jan 2011 10:29 AM
Adele Maxon

Great account & pictures Steve! Thanks!

18 Jan 2011 10:29 AM
shuttleworth

Steve,

Many thanks for the beautiful pictures and the great story of Zenyatta's new life on the farm...

Zenny: Congratulations on being crowned Horse of the Year! ... and you are always the Queen of our Hearts...

18 Jan 2011 10:30 AM
Rose

Wow what a great article! Felt like I was right there when I was reading it. Pics are great, she looks very happy. Only hope I can meet Zenyatta in person one day..now that would be a dream come true!

18 Jan 2011 10:30 AM
Sue

  Thank you for such a lovely, informative,photoshot article!! As you know, us fans can NEVER GET ENOUGH of our human equine  QUEEN ZENYATTA. And now to have a 'briefing' as to her daily routine is wonderful ( tho it will obviously change, substantially, when they move her to the ( breeding?) shed.

  ZENYATTA   HOTY OF 2011 & a LIFETIME

18 Jan 2011 10:31 AM
Astrid

Thank you, Mr. Haskin for another beautiful article and photos of Zenyatta! The one with her and P.Q. is priceless!

I never got the chance of visiting Zenyatta but I wanted to see Zenyatta as a racehorse, in all her glory and power and dancing feet. This chapter of a fairytale story has ended with "...and she lived happily ever after" and a sequel of "Zenyatta and her foals" is in the works...

She was so many things to so many people and now she is retired - she has earned it. I am happy that she gets to be a 'just' horse, still a magnificient one though!

Visiting her now would feel intrusive to me and of course her safety must come first!

Maybe one day we will be able to see her at Old Friends or maybe in a few years, after a few foals we will get to see her from a distance, watching her roll in the mud and play... For now, I am just grateful for the updates, pictures and videos of her and share her new life. I am sure Team Z will always be in her heart! I know that her enldess fans wish her all the happiness in the world! She will always be ZENYATTA!

P.S. Is there an update of Life is Sweet? Did she have the foal yet??

18 Jan 2011 10:31 AM
Dani

I'm still basking in the glow of last night. I cannot even begin to tell you the incredible emotions I felt when they called her name. I was like a kid again who got my favorite toy for Christmas. Jumping for joy, yelling out OMGs she won, she really won. Yes I shed a few tears as well.

Great article and interviews and fabulous photos Steve. I can only imagine how wonderful it was to see Zenyatta in her new environment. And to see her with a best friend in Pirate Queen and to have other mares with whom she enjoys leading the horse life with, it's just so heartening.

How blessed we all are for being a part of her life as fans. She's given us the thrill of a lifetime and I know we will all be following her as she enters into her new adventure.

18 Jan 2011 10:32 AM
PATTI

WHAT AN AWESOME ARICLE!  THANK YOU STEVE FOR SHARING YOUR FANTASTIC DAY WITH ZENYATTA.  WHAT FUN TO READ HOW WELL SHE HAS ADJUSTED TO HER NEW LIFE.  

EVERYONE IS THRILLED SHE HAS WON THE HORSE OF THE YEAR AWARD.  ZENYATTA IS THE PEOPLE'S HORSE.  

18 Jan 2011 10:32 AM
LouAnn Cingel of Union, Missouri

Ah Steve!  What a wonderful writeup.  You never fail to bring your subject to life as I read.  You made me feel like I was right there with visiting with Zenyatta.

It is so comforting to know that she is doing well and is happy just being a horse. And I also have the deepest respect for Lane's End taking such wonderful care of Zenyatta, after all, they love her too, how could anyone not?

And now, Lane's End is the home of the Great Champion, Zenyatta, 2010 Horse Of The Year!  May our Queen forever reign!

Love & Blessings Always

18 Jan 2011 10:33 AM
Sally in indy

What a lovely article! So happy to learn that Zenyatta is loving her life as 'just a horse' - and especially that she has friends! It's just thrilling. Thanks so much for this update - please keep 'em coming from time to time!

18 Jan 2011 10:33 AM
Debbie1948

She not just a horse, she Zenyatta!

Thanks Haskin.

18 Jan 2011 10:34 AM
Big Lou

Thank you Steve for the wonderfull article.I have been involved in all aspects with the thourougbreds but always like best the farm part of it.There you have the chance to see them as what they are,HORSES themselves.And for what you descibe that is what ZENYATA is doing.

18 Jan 2011 10:34 AM
SK Racing Stable

I really enjoyed this article. Thanks for the update.

18 Jan 2011 10:34 AM
LouAnn Cingel of Union, Missouri

Forgot to thankyou for the addition of the wonderful photos of Zenyatta during your visit.  She is so gorgeous just being a horse!

Zenyatta 2010 Horse Of The Year!

Love & Blessings

18 Jan 2011 10:34 AM
Deb

She is still so grand.....

18 Jan 2011 10:35 AM
Rachel O

I don't know when I've gone to bed any happier than last night when Zenyatta was finally given the tribute of Horse of the Year. Still, to me she is Horse of a Lifetime. I never saw Man O' War or Secrfetariat, but she is right up there with them in greatness. Every race she ran was spinetingling in excitement for the fans. No other horse did what she did, and no other horse was so entertaining while doing it.

I'll never ever forget planting two kisses on her neck and rubbing her nose at Barn 55 in Hollywood Park a week before she flew to Kentucky.

You're right, Steve. I think perhaps she's happier now than she's been for a while, and you described it perfectly. It's time for her to be a mom, but maybe--just maybe--she'll yearn for another role in a few years. Who knows?

18 Jan 2011 10:35 AM
FunnyCideFanboy

Just beautiful, Steve. You are one lucky devil to get to see the great Z up close and personal.

18 Jan 2011 10:40 AM
Maureen

Steve: This is great. Thanks for the pictures of Z and her buddy.I am also glad that Z was named HOY. It should have happened last year! So, better late than never.

18 Jan 2011 10:42 AM
Delrene

Dear Steve:  I have been looking forward to your input and impressions of her at Lane's End. Your article helped me understand how she is acclimating to her new environment and lifestyle.  She is a true champion and handling it all with such grace.  Thank you so much and especially for the pictures.  How fun for your wife to meet her in person for the first time.

She is one for the ages.

18 Jan 2011 10:43 AM
Susan from VA

Mr. Haskins,

You are so lucky to get to visit the "Queen."  And we are lucky that we have you to write about it!

18 Jan 2011 10:43 AM
LaLa

Geeeez! Just seeing her in pictures gives me goosebumps.. I can only imagine what one feels when seeing this magnificent girl in person!

I loved the last paragraph!

Good luck Lady Z! =)

18 Jan 2011 10:44 AM
Cleone

Oh, Steve.  Wonderful as always!  I love all the little tidbits, like how excited Charles Campbell was when he heard she was coming to Lane's End, and about the two other managers who wanted their pictures taken with her.  It's great to hear that her health - both reproductive and in general - is so good, and how well she's adapted to farm life.  Your photo of her in her stall with Campbell shows how well she's integrated all her new people into her "family".  Awesome.

18 Jan 2011 10:48 AM
arlene

Great story about a great mare.  I am still smiling after reading it. Thank you for this glimpse of Zenyatta.  HOY!!!!!!!!!!!

18 Jan 2011 10:49 AM
Ava

This is fanatstic that she has been recognized as 2010 HORSE OF THE YEAR! It is clear now why they can't have her have many visitors, but you can follow her thru her Jockey, Mike Smith on his Facebook page, which is Mike Smith Jockey- You can also follow her on her Facebook page, which is Zenyatta.

18 Jan 2011 10:49 AM
PerkyGreen

Great photos, and nice article. The insight of what is going on with the peoples Champion is great, hope to see & hear more.

18 Jan 2011 10:55 AM
Julie Ann

"Still floating on a cloud" after last nights HOTY's Awards and the crowning of our Queen Zenyatta!  This is a great article and I'm looking forward to more!  Thanks!  Julie Ann

18 Jan 2011 10:55 AM
Sunny Farm

What a wonderful story and thanks for sharing the broodmare routine at Lanes End ! Everyone at the farm has done SUCH a wonderful job with ZENYATTA & she looks well & happy...content.

It was also enjoyable to read more about Mr. Campbell , the farm is so fortunate to have him !

Thanks, Mr. Haskins for another ZENYATTA story !

Now I can imagine her owners needing porters to load up all of thier Eclipse awards. CONGRATULATIONS to the Z-TEAM !

Long live the Queen ~ !

18 Jan 2011 10:57 AM
Carol

Thanks so much for the great story and sharing your visit with us!

Long Reign Queen Z!

18 Jan 2011 10:57 AM
Fran

Again, Steve, a wonderful piece on Zenyatta.  She is a horse at last, and you have given the public a wonderful and exciting view of her new and wonderful life as a horse!

18 Jan 2011 10:59 AM
Abigail Anderson

I love this piece, Steve. (But then again I've never read anything you've done that I didn't enjoy thoroughly.) Apart from the photos -- I was hoping to see some of her with her new friend(s) -- I found the information about the early stages of Zenyatta's retirement & preparation for breeding really, really interesting, because I know almost nothing about this in any kind of detailed way. I also feel it is important to explain to her fans why Zenyatta can't be as accessible now as she was at Barn 55; it will help everyone to make their own "transition" in their relationship with her as she begins what we all hope will be a very happy & healthy stage of life.

18 Jan 2011 11:01 AM
Connie

Zenyatta is simply "THE BEST" and oh how lucky you are to be able to visit.  I visit her too, every wall in my computer room is covered with her pictures - she makes my day, every day. Plain and simple "I Love Zenyatta" and for me, it's been a long time between love affairs.

18 Jan 2011 11:02 AM
saharagold

Dear Steve,

Thanks for the article and the pictures.  They are great!  Even though I can't go visit her like I did at Hollywood Park, it helps when other people can visit her and write about it and publish it where all her fans can see it.  I hope you get to visit her several times a year because you write about it so well!  

18 Jan 2011 11:10 AM
OAKLAWN FAN

Thanks for the great article and pictures Steve.  It sure looks like our Queen is happy and comfortable.  Now her thousands upon thousands of fans await two more milestones in her life, ie., who her mate will be and of course "the birth of Queen Z's first foal!

18 Jan 2011 11:11 AM
anita b

Thank you Steve for such a nice article. Who do you think she should be bred to? And why?  One day I hope I am able to go to Kentucky and see  Zenyatta in "person!"

18 Jan 2011 11:17 AM
Paula

Just want to thank you so much on keeping us posted as to how Zen is doing, I think it really keeps her fans at ease knowing that she is doing so well. I also wanted to thank you for the awsome photos that you have posted of her, she is looking so happy just being a horse. And we want to thank Lanes End for taking good care of our Queen, and I totally understand the visiting situation cause she is very important to us and dont want anything to happen. But I will have to say I can not wait to eventually get to see the Queen in person. Again, thank you again, and We Love You Zen... Cant wait to see a baby Zen running along side of you... Thanks Lanes End

18 Jan 2011 11:18 AM
SLICK

WHEN FIRST I SAW HER I KNEW THAT SHE WAS SOMETHING SPECIAL.EACH AND EVERY RACE PROVED I WAS RIGHT.WHEN IT WAS SAID ABOUT SECRETARIET THAT HE COULD DO ANY QUARTER MILE IN A MILE AND A QUARTER RACE IN 24 SECONDS WE ALL THOUGHT THAT WAS GREAT.THE QUEEN CAN DO THAT SAME QUARTER IN 22 AND CHANGE.THAT IS HER CLAIM TO FAME ALONG WITH HER GREAT PERSONALITY.ALL THE LUCK TO HER AND HERS.

18 Jan 2011 11:19 AM
Serena

Don't know whether to laugh or cry (all in a good way)   So glad to read this. And thank you for the great information.  I think it's important to reinforce the fact that -- despite her legion of fans wanting to visit her -- the farm must restrict this.  As you mention, a broodmare is far different than a stallion.  For all her experience, she is a novice to this breeding and motherhood thing.... she needs to be coddled and pampered and safeguarded to the utmost.  I, for one, enjoy the delightful Diary that is posted on her website and the continuing efforts of her "peeps" to keep us all informed of her new life and how well she is doing.  Thanks again for the story and the beautiful pictures.  Glad your wife finally got to meet your "other woman"  

18 Jan 2011 11:20 AM
Susie Stacy

and the beat goes on... Congratulations to Team Z for managing Zenyatta with the same care and expertise shown during her racing campaign. It was nice to see the recognition given not only by the Eclipse Awards but by fellow competitors in the business. Steve, you've helped all of us who's hearts have been captured by this magnificent mare. Your articles translate our feelings into the written word and educate us to the world of horse racing. It's so nice to be able to follow Zenyatta as she goes to the next chapter. Thank you

18 Jan 2011 11:20 AM
ALC

Thanks for the "visit," Steve! I love that people are doing what they can to keep Zenyatta close to her adoring public.

18 Jan 2011 11:23 AM
Suzanna Nemeth DMD

Gee, my sister retired a racehorse with us here in Morris, Ct., and he's on the same routine as Zenyatta!  Except he hates bananas.

18 Jan 2011 11:30 AM
Shelby's Best Pal

This was so good!  I enjoyed reading every word and the pictures are lovely.  Thank you, Steve Haskin.  Also, thank you for including the comments on how John Shirreffs feeds his horses.  He is such a special trainer and a unique person and in my humble opinion, the Trainer of the Year.  I will always side with quality over quantity.

18 Jan 2011 11:31 AM
Terry Carter

Loved your article. Very well done.

18 Jan 2011 11:33 AM
LeeAnne

Thank you for the wonderful update and the photos. Chances are that most of us won't ever get to see her in person so it is nice of you to share your visits with all of us.

18 Jan 2011 11:34 AM
Derby Dew

Steve,

Thank you for your wonderful description of your visit to Lane's End to see Zenyatta.  It made me feel like I was there along with you to see this magnificent mare.  So glad to see her win the Eclipse Award as Horse of the Year.  Her league of fans are waiting in high anticipation to find out who will father her first foal.

Long reigh the Queen, Zenyatta!

18 Jan 2011 11:34 AM
Sango

LONG LIVE THE QUEEN!

I Cant wait for the annoucement on who is the lucky stud lol

18 Jan 2011 11:35 AM
ROXYLLSK

she looks so happy !! I'm so glad that she's relaxing and enjoying her new life !

18 Jan 2011 11:36 AM
Fran Loszynski

One thing to add Steve,

I just thought of a wizz-bang name for one of Zenyatta's foals--

ZENSATIONAL DANCER

18 Jan 2011 11:36 AM
Tressa

Lovely story.  I appreciate being able to snoop and get a little bit of an idea what's up with Zenyatta as I've been following her for years.

I can only imagine the massive pressure on Lanes End and the Zenyatta connections to balance what is best for Zenyatta along with the demanding fan following.  I know that a lot of people think I'm insane with the questions before I'll allow a visit with our mares and foals - especially when there is any disease roaming around in our neck of the woods.

Thanks for the story.

18 Jan 2011 11:39 AM
Heidi

Thanks for the personal update. I'm very happy to see that she is thriving in her new environment!

18 Jan 2011 11:43 AM
horseracinglover

Oh Steve Thank You. A beautiful piece as always. And now its offical. Zenyatta Horse of the Year. She looks so happy in your photos. Sometimes it is hard for them to come down, but she seems to be just grand. I hope to be in Kentucky in July. I am sure they will get "visitation" sorted out. What a magic wonderful mare she is. God Bless Queen Z and Team Z East & West. Steve you and Dottie should get together and do a book. Dottie is Zenyatta's voice.....Steve Haskin interviews Zenyatta...just a thought. Thanks again Steve.

18 Jan 2011 11:43 AM
margaret mccoy

GREAT ARTICLE!!!!

18 Jan 2011 11:44 AM
margaret mccoy

GREAT ARTICLE!!!!

18 Jan 2011 11:44 AM
RachelForever

What an amazing piece, especially right after she wins HOTY. She looks so happy now. I'm sure she was probably real happy during her career because of the great care she got and how she loved running, but now she's romping around like...well, like a horse. Great insight on why she can't be viewed by her loving fans as much as they would like to, also.

18 Jan 2011 11:45 AM
Ofelia

Steve,

Thank you for the update. I watched the Eclipse awards last night and I was thrilled Z was HOY. Does it really matter in terms of her greatness? probably not. It does affirm to the rest of the racing world and the fans that a truly great horse and gift had come our way. She spent three years thrilling us, dancing for us and she ran away with our hearts.

I have horses and understand the importance of keeping her and her future foal safe but I visit Kentucky every year and I would give anything to see the Queen.   It is just that I get "it." I have witnessed an extraordinary event in racing. This is not sentimental nonsense. To see a horse race for three years and win 19 consecutive races, lose the 20th by no fault of her own and then retire sound, is unprecedented. Let us celebrate and bask in her radiance.

18 Jan 2011 11:45 AM
anncat

Thank you, Steve, for answering all the questions I didn't know to ask.  I enjoy everything about Zenyatta and screamed with joy last night when her name was announced as Horse of the Year. And then I log on this morning and find that you have written another great article about her.  I enjoy particularly the opportunity to learn more about how race horses are transitioned to the breeding farms.  I know that Zenyatta's preparation and transition to the breeding shed and motherhood may be a bit out of the ordinary for the average Thoroughbred mare, but those details are fascinating to me.  Thanks for writing this fascinating report.  I am so jealous.

18 Jan 2011 11:47 AM
Ann Maree

Steve, thanks so much for sharing this!  Great info for the fans to see and appreciate how delicate the steps are to get her, safely, in foal.  I will be posting this and I'm sure it will be re-posted all around the internet and the world!  You have been a great fan as well as writer of all that Zenyatta has accommplished.  She has one more big job to do -- give us a little Zenyatta.  Hopefully, she will be able to pass on some of her fine genes.  Looking at her mama's pictures, her mama passed on her good looks and sweet disposition.  Her daddy, Street Cry, is one strong, handsome and talented horse in his own right, and he gave her a lot of his strength and agility. Thanks again...keep us updated.  Ann Maree Matthews (Facebook).

18 Jan 2011 11:50 AM
Robin

Steve:

Today is my birthday and I've received the 2 best presents ever...Zenyatta as HOY and your blog and pictures.  Thank you! Thank you!

18 Jan 2011 11:51 AM
mhorn

Thoroughly enjoyed that!  Thank you. Even tho I've been a fan since her 3rd race, being from the east coast I've never seen her in person.  I do hope to travel to KY to see her. So I do hope Lane's End is able to work out a visiting program. Of course taking into consideration her well-being first and foremost.

18 Jan 2011 11:55 AM
darlene

great story I'm also a little jealous that you got to see her and I haven't But to receive word from knowledgble sources that she is doing well will suffice for now Good pictures,too

18 Jan 2011 11:56 AM
Shortskinnylady

What a wonderful column, Steve, and great information! She does appear happy now to be "just a horse" if that is ever possible, though I doubt that will occur anytime soon, or even in her lifetime. Perhaps a decade down the road, thousands (or millions?) of people won't be hanging on words from you, Dottie Ingordo-Shirreffs and the others who write about her, about what she is doing and how she is doing, but I doubt it. Thanks for bringing your visit to see Zenny to us so clearly - was almost like being there. She is not only Horse of the Year, but a horse of a generation, at least, if not of a lifetime.

18 Jan 2011 11:58 AM
CV

Hi Steve, thanks for your follow-up on how Z is doing at Lane End. Do you know how she's getting along with the other mares? I notice she's got nicked places on her shoulder and butt in one of your Facebook pics. Kinda looks like someone's been picking on her. ;)

18 Jan 2011 11:59 AM
Shannon From Cool

Excellent article. Very informative with terrific photos. Good job to all. Thank you.

18 Jan 2011 12:04 PM
donkeyhoteeee

Beautiful story!  It shows that with the quality of handling she has always received, racehorses can be happy on and off the track.  For all the wonderful accomplishments of her career, I hope what the sport can learn is to model her entire timeline and treatment into the new standard.  Congrats Team Z and thank you Steve!!

18 Jan 2011 12:04 PM
erhrdt3

Lovely commentary, and love the photos. I esp. enjoyed reading about her friends and her cat! That is pretty cool.

However, the one thing that sends up a red flag is the farm's comments about her getting visitors. I doubt that the folks that love The Queen will get to see her, unless you are "somebody" not a regular joe.  I'd love to see her, but how is this farm going to deal with this celebrity?

It's kinda sad, though, to see her off the track. Nothing to look forward to this year. No Zenyatta. No circling the dates of her races on the calender. We love her, we miss her. Plus we know she can still do it on the track and now she is gone from there.

I'm glad she has Pirate Queen, and her other friends, but I think she loved running the most. IMHO.  It's so far between that we get a legend like her, and now she's behind the locked security gates.

:(

18 Jan 2011 12:07 PM
clarinetmama

Thank you so much for the update on her.  Yay, Horse of the Year for Zenyatta!  

18 Jan 2011 12:09 PM
Breezin'

Great story and photos, as always!  Is there any way we could learn a little bit about Z's new friends?  In other words, did they race, their pedigrees, who trained them, etc? I know it's important to respect those owners' privacy, but if they are agreeable, maybe we could find out their stories.  Pirate Queen looks like a real sweetie!

18 Jan 2011 12:09 PM
queen's oregon fan

Thanks, Steve, for this glimpse into Zenyatta's new life - a perfect dessert after her HOY award last evening.  We've been longing for the latest news from the farm. Her special appeal, beyond the physical, the palpable spirit which enlivens the fans of  great equines, is why we find ourselves weeping & yelling for joy at the sight of her, even in pasture or paddock views with her distaff companions. Thanks for including info on Charles Campbell.

The Queen continues to be in the best of hands. I so love being connected to the racing world via your writings, experience and photographs.

18 Jan 2011 12:10 PM
Crystal

simply perfect. What a wonderful piece.

18 Jan 2011 12:17 PM
lbshull

Love the story and hope they work out a way for her fans to see her.

18 Jan 2011 12:17 PM
Karen2

I hope they cut off her drinking once she is in foal..hehe...seriously Steve..thank you for this wonderful blog on our girl. This is truly one of the first horses in this industry that I feel has been handled perfectly from start to finish. Then to receive horse of the year... What a story book ending.

18 Jan 2011 12:17 PM
Meg Hannon

Thank you very much for the article and photographs.  Zenyatta is one in a million and her fans will never forget her, and will in fact, follow her career as a broodmare.

18 Jan 2011 12:17 PM
BuddysMom

Thank you for the lovely article and great pictures. I never tire of seeing Queen Zee.

18 Jan 2011 12:20 PM
sushyne

I feel calm, relieved and happy all at once having read this article and seen the photos. Thank you Steve for letting us get a peek into her life on the farm....

18 Jan 2011 12:24 PM
ZenyattaReigns

It makes my heart happy to read such a beautiful article and know she's brilliantly happy being free from competition these days. I just know she'll produce the next Tripple Crown winner. Zeny doesn't do anything half baked. It's destiny!

18 Jan 2011 12:24 PM
Oscar's Scoutmaster

Thoroughly enjoyed the article and loved the photos.   What a super temperament this mare has.....so big and yet so calm and sensible.....sure hope she passes on all her wonderful qualities....Good luck Zenyatta..!

18 Jan 2011 12:25 PM
slee

Well, how cool is that!  I'm glad "Z" is liking being a horse.  It's great to see that she's making the transition to the farm well, and that the farm is, basically, a whole new fan club ready to love her and do what's best for her.

Thanks Steve!

18 Jan 2011 12:26 PM
Oldie

How absolutely lovely, Steve.  Thank you for sharing this with all of us.  The pictures certainly seem to show a very happy mare.  I was surprised to find myself choking up while reading the details of her new life, particularly how glad she seems to be to be in the company of other horses again.  Intellectually I understand the herd instincts at work, but emotionally I can only think how happy she must be to have friends.

Thank you again.

18 Jan 2011 12:29 PM
Dkaelene

Thank you for your wonderful article and pictures!

18 Jan 2011 12:31 PM
LDP

thank you so much for the articles. i wish i could have seen her run in person. What a wonderful mare and team Zenyatta what a great boost to our industry you are.

18 Jan 2011 12:32 PM
Jean Lubin - equine artist

Steve,

    Once again, your article and photos brought tears to my eyes.  And you always have answers to the questions that we, as Zenyatta's fans, have -- the names of her paddock-mates, her daily routine, and so forth.  A delightful read about our "Horse of the Year".

18 Jan 2011 12:33 PM
Terry C

Thanks for another great story.  Zenyatta is one of a kind and a once in a lifetime horse.  All her fans will miss her but appreciate you letting us know that her future is in capable and loving hands.

18 Jan 2011 12:35 PM
Linda in Texas

Steve, Steve, Steve, i am still so overwhelmed that Zenyatta has been finally recognized as Horse of The Year that i cannot yet see thru my tears of joy for her and for all who love her and respect her as i do.

I am going to save this article and read it later so i can read the words when my emotions come back to earth. But Zenyatta won her due and everyone who wrote about her, wrote in for her, supported her for 2 years and more are to be commended for not giving up on such a magnificent creature.

If it were not for your articles, Steve and your patience with us and your ear to us that allowed so many loving people to write some of the most beautiful words i have ever read about a horse,or read period.  I just don't think those who vote would have realized her impact on Thoroughbred Horse Racing without such heart filled comments from so many people from so many walks of life.

I remember Ann Moss's words picked up on a microphone immediately after Zenyatta lost to the gallant and mighty Blame in her last race.

Mrs. Moss said, "I wonder if she knows she lost?"

Mrs. Moss, now you can say to her when you see Zenyatta, "You won, you won." And i know she will understand your words.

Thank you Steve, you are the greatest and before this month ends, I can still legally say,

Happy New Year to you and yours, and to all who post on your blog.

2010 will never be forgotten in my yearbook of fond memories.

18 Jan 2011 12:37 PM
abbie, durham NH

Good, good, good,

informative, delightful, comprehensive,

good, good, good

thank you!

18 Jan 2011 12:43 PM
Nadine Kagan

Jan 19...POST-ELECTION DAY !!!

Had the Eclipse voting gone the other way, it would have been a total slap in the face to racing fans, who know true majesty when it is in the their midst.  The entire TEAM ZENYATTA is the essence of what racing could be if others behaved in like fashion.  Cudos to the brilliance of Claiborne farm, now and in the past, but fans do enjoy the pure joy and generosity displayed by TEAM  ZENYATTA ....enthusiasm, tears of joy, and overt gratitude...not mater-of-fact stoicism.  

18 Jan 2011 12:44 PM
Liz

Wonderful piece.  I felt like I was there.  It is good to see her interacting closely with other horses and to know that she is so well cared for.

18 Jan 2011 12:45 PM
Otherlyn

Thank you for writing this good report.  We who Love her need to know that she is well and happy.  She is our treasure indeed.  Long live The Queen. I look forward to knowing who (the stallion), that they have deemed worthy of her.  My "dream-date" would have been OGYGIAN,(last of the line of DAMASCUS) to pass on that wonderful propensity for a come-from-behind-run.  Some people seem to think that "an armour chink," but I think it is a strength to build upon, as well as great heart and stamina.  OGYGIAN, (at Old Friends) could do this...but only in THIS fan's dreams. All the best to Z and her frens. God bless and keep her. Long live The Queen.  

18 Jan 2011 12:46 PM
Gay Forstbauer

what a lovely mare, and a fortunate one as well.  Good Luck Queen Z....have lots of lovely babies, I am sure that you will be a fantastic mum.

18 Jan 2011 12:48 PM
El Kabong

What a beauty. Thanks for sharing this with us Steve. It must have been a fulfilling moment to see her enjoying her new surroundings. Long live the Queen, who we all agree, is a worthy King.

A special thanks too for her connections, The Moss's etc. for doing such a tremendous job of training, caring and racing this horse for so long. Our sport needs more of this, and I hope we don't have to wait too long for this commitment to racing to catch on with others.

18 Jan 2011 12:50 PM
WWSTP

Thanks for this wonderful update Steve.  I really appreciate the wonderful adaptability of Zenyatta.  After all that she fully invested in her racing career and with adoring people around her, I am thrilled that she gets to be a horse; is enjoying being a horse and is making that transition so well; and that she has a good buddy.  I mean really, isn't that wonderful!  Perhaps she will loose some of that glow she bestowed on crowds and the racetrack, but that's a small tradeoff we who love her freely accept in order for her to receive so much of what she truly deserves and earned...being a horse...a dearly loved and well taken care of horse who can roll in the dirt, kick up her heels in a paddock, and have good friends to play with and graze with.  She is now part of a herd....back to her natural instinctual terrain and it must feel SO GOOD to her.

18 Jan 2011 12:55 PM
Susie

Thanks so much, Steve, for the update and the pictures of Zenyatta.  I'm glad she's at Lane's End where she has the absolute best of care.  Can't wait to see who will be her first date.  Personally, I hope it's A.P.

18 Jan 2011 12:56 PM
Karen in Texas

Thanks for sharing your visit with Zenyatta! It's wonderful to hear that she has friends, including a cat! The farm seems to be a caring and safe place for her to continue her life as a broodmare. Now we just need to know which stallion will be chosen first...

18 Jan 2011 12:57 PM
Slew

I'm guessing my previous post didn't make it.  Steve, you have such a tender way with words and your prose becomes poetry with that magic.  Thank you so much for the insight...and the great photos.

18 Jan 2011 12:58 PM
Robin from Maryland

"OH, HAPPY DAY!"  It's great to see The Queen this morning especially after last night.  Way to go Team Z!!! It was about time! She looks very happy and relaxed with her buddy, and I have no doubt soon all the mares will be dancing "The Dance".  Wishing all the winners from last night congrats - but the biggest one is for Team Z.  I don't care who she's bred to, as long as the foal is sound and of good bone.  Think that the Mosses will have plenty of help with the selection process.  This ones for you Z, may you live long and prosper!!

18 Jan 2011 1:05 PM
Steve Haskin

I'm sorry for the delay in posting the comments. Everything got backed up and there were more than I could have imagined. I will go back and read them in their entirety and respond to as many as possible. Thank you all for your wonderful comments. It was my privilege to have had the opportunity to visit Zenyatta and share the experience with everyone.

18 Jan 2011 1:06 PM
Linda M

Ahhhh Steve, what would we do without you and your wonderful pieces to share with us.

Last night I scared the heck out of my cat, who was sitting on my lap.  When THE GREAT Z, was, mercifully, announced HOY, I started yelling and clapping, and boy, did kitty take off like a hot potato.  With all the crazy thoughts about naming HOY, nobody, and I mean nobody, deserves it more than our lady.  Besides winning 19 straight, just look at what she has done for the TV ratings, handle and attendance at the venues she raced at, the "new" people who are now racing fans because of Z.  

ZENYATTA......YOU ARE THE HORSE OF THE DECADE.  Can't wait to see your babies.

Will miss your great racing and your adorable dances.

18 Jan 2011 1:13 PM
Matt

Another fantastic piece, Steve. As always, thanks for taking your readers along for the ride.

18 Jan 2011 1:14 PM
Golden Gate

Steve, Thank you for the great update. I am s glad she has a real horse buddy. I was at Oaklawn yesterday and as I watched the races remembered how she looked at the Apple Blossom and how she "bowed" when she was introduced before the race. God truly made her such a wonderful animal and we are blessed to have been on Earth at the same time to see such a magnificent creature. I can't wait to hear who the lucky stallion is (-:

18 Jan 2011 1:14 PM
Saddle57

Thank you so much for the wonderful article and photos. I saw the "Queen" at the Breeder's Cup. I was standing in the tunnel, and saw her come in and go out.

She looks as beautiful now as she did then. I'm glad she has new friends to graze with!

18 Jan 2011 1:16 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

It is the storybook happy ending afterall although "ending" is really the inproper word for this perpetual fairy tale. We were disappointed Zenyatta didn't get her win in her final BC but happy that she proved to the naysayers what she was all about. HOY and a wonderful glimpse into Zenyatta's new life on the farm from Steve has all of us dancing down the lane with Zenyatta, singing zip-a-dee-doo-dah zip-a-dee-ay, my oh my what a wonderful day. Plenty of sunshine headin' my way !!!!!

18 Jan 2011 1:18 PM
Matthew W

Steve, thanks a lot for bringing a tear to my eye this AM, Zenyatta is an important horse, a cornerstone horse of the Thoroughbred breed, the "Unbeatable Mare"--that is to say, she was beaten, yes, but never once was Zenyatta defeated--for her to (finally) win HOY--that could not have been done were it not for the East Coast Writers--they had to look past the obvious (results of the Classic)--to see the obvious--Zenyatta was best--she was best on that day, very much like when Exceller beat Seattle Slew in the '78 J C Gold Cup--the iconic 2nd place finish! You could write a book about that day alone, when her only defeat showcased her greatness--racing took their sweet time, but they got it right--Zenyatta was the greatest female horse who ever lived....

18 Jan 2011 1:21 PM
Melissa

Steve,

HOY Zenyatta is also Horse of my heart and I just love the way you write.

Hugs

Melissa

18 Jan 2011 1:24 PM
Mike Relva

HELLO STEVE

This was something I've looked forward to after hearing you would be visiting her. Thanks for the update and pictures. Glad for her and connections for winning HOY.

18 Jan 2011 1:26 PM
arliss

I hope she has a Happy Retirement.  After watching last night's EWclipse Awards, it makes me think back to how bad it was last year when she lost to Rachel Alexandra.  Zenyatta was 10 times the horse Rachel Alexandra ever was.  She should have won her 2nd HOY last night.

18 Jan 2011 1:44 PM
Megan

Thank you so much Mr Haskin.This truly is a lovely article.Definitely a way for us to visualize how Zenyatta is doing these days.So glad to know she is doing well & adjusting to being "a horse" must be wonderful for her.I'm quite sure she is still a sight to behold.Her nature & spirit will probably never change & I think that is what attracts us to her,besides watching her races of course.Zenyatta just seems so well mannered & adjusted,it's like she knows what is expected of her,she never lets us down.She is a real lady & Queen.Her name will reign long into the future.I hope she is blessed with healthy,strong babies & that she will be happy with her new life at Lane's End.Thanks for visiting her & giving us a glimpse of how far she has come.Much appreciated.2010 HOTY Zenyatta.Congrats to you big girl & Team Z.

18 Jan 2011 1:45 PM
Especially Horses

Like you said “no one can get inside a horse’s head”, but I was comforted by Ingordo’s comment “she knew it was time to get off the stage.”  I’ve been trying to figure out why this horse has touched my heart like no other Thoroughbred.  For well over 40 years I’ve been following horseracing and I’ve been mesmerized by the beauty and majesty of many a Champion and even the unknown (except to me) Allowance or Claimer. If you love horseracing you will shed tears over career ending injuries and worse yet life ending breakdowns, but Zenyatta is the only one who made me cry myself to sleep from total mental exhaustion of replaying in my head, over and over again, her last race.   I’ve berated myself, saying many a time “get over this, this is ridiculous, you are too old for this”.  But recently I thought back to my childhood and remembered how I discovered the world of horseracing, The Sport of Kings, when I checked-out from the school library C.W. Anderson’s book on Man O’ War.  I guess you could say Man O’ War was my first Thoroughbred heartthrob.  I read everything about him; who bred him, how he came to be named, who his trainer, jockey and groom were. I studied his pedigree. I learned about his stud career.  And I knew he died 9 years before I was born.  I never saw him race, never visited him at Stud, but he stirred my emotions like no other, and then came Zenyatta.  And now I think I understand – she is my Man O’ War in the flesh, she has allowed me to witness and experience firsthand “de mostest hoss that ever was”.

18 Jan 2011 1:50 PM
Carole

Really a great informative piece!! Great way to learn some of the things that take place on these farms and the procedures and considerations they have to deal with when they have to prepare a mare for breeding after the routine of racing, especially one like Z. I believe these kind of article and videos will take the edge off for a lot of the people who want to visit her in person.  Hopefully the LE Farms will post updates periodically. A quick video shouldn't be too hard??!! Again, a great piece!! loved it.

18 Jan 2011 2:00 PM
Deana Dameron

Thanks so much Steve for taking the time to explain in great detail what Z's daily life is all about.  I learned a lot about the process leading up to her getting preganant, and her acclimating to every day "horse" life.  I am happy to hear that she is doing so well.  I cannot wait to see her role as Queen Mum.  She will be so sweet and loving.  Thanks again for a superb article-well done!

18 Jan 2011 2:02 PM
rams2050

Congratulations to Zenyatta and TEAM Zenyatta for a brilliant campaign and the marketing of their prized filly/mare to us, the great (unwashed -- ;-) masses.

I can't express how thrilled I am that the Eclipse Award voters got it right and honored the Queen for her many contributions to our sport.

Thank you, Steve, for your report.  It is so wonderful to see Zenyatta settling so well into her new life.  Thank you for sharing that with us.

18 Jan 2011 2:02 PM
Voyager

Like the "Lady Z", Steve Haskin you are the best.

Last Nights' award show gave us something else to honor the Greatest Racing Mare ever with and that's the fact that more owners and trainers will now make their stars more available to their adoring fans. That's life changing for many in the racing industry and we will owe that pleasure to the Zenyatta Team and the great Lady herself.  

18 Jan 2011 2:02 PM
Aluminaut

Thanks Steve for the wonderful story and photos. So nice to see Zenyatta enjoying the snow and crisp air.  It was 84 degrees in Los Angeles yesterday; quite a contrast.

I really hope you get to do the story next year on her 1st foal.  Here's to all going well for Zenyatta.  

18 Jan 2011 2:09 PM
Bobbi

Great article, Mr. Haskin. Thanks for giving us the update on our Queen.

18 Jan 2011 2:09 PM
robin from michigan

congrats zenyatta, big girl. we are all so proud of you and your achievements on the racetrack.

18 Jan 2011 2:13 PM
Freetex

What joy she brings to our everyday lives.

Zenyatta will never be forgotten.  Her legacy is now more than ever finally validated.

May her reign be long and serene.

18 Jan 2011 2:24 PM
kathleen o

I can think of no one better suited to write the book about Zenyatta, Steve......you have captured the essence of the horse, the times, and her fans.

18 Jan 2011 2:24 PM
jayjay

Especially Horses : Loved your post!

18 Jan 2011 2:26 PM
Aluminaut

Thank-you to all the voters who cast their ballots for Zenyatta as Horse of the Year.  She is an extraordinary athlete.  I can't think of another horse in recent history who could have settled into the unfamiliar dirt kickback in the Classic, made up so much ground, avoided a horse backing up on the rail, and still nearly caught Blame, who was pulling away and digging in at the wire.  As someone else said, she fired every time, on every track.

Especially Horses,

Zenyatta has made children of us all and reminded us of all the greats in history.  

18 Jan 2011 2:27 PM
Householder

"Blame is the winner at least

2-1.  You can take that to the bank!"  Draynay.

You can add beating the 2 year old and 3 year old male champion to her list of accomplishments and Eclipse award winners she defeated in her lifetime.  She also beat Gio Ponte, who is now a 2 time Eclipse award winner.  

It took 20 years to beat Bayakoa's graded stakes and earnings record by a filly or mare.  I don't think another filly/mare/colt/horse will ever come close to Zenyatta's records particularly within the area of consecutive Grade 1s.

What did QR and Blame rack up?  3-4 Grade 1s.   Just is not done anymore.

Did anyone else think "Why are they retiring Lookin and Lucky?"  He's just getting started.

18 Jan 2011 2:43 PM
quarterhossgal

Steve....I envy you your trip to see Queen Z. What a great opportunity to see Horse of the Year ZENYATTA.  I was so happy to see all of Team Z honored by the industry especially the owner of Blind Luck that had so many good things to say about Zen. He may well be our next Jerry Moss. I wish his gutsy little mare all the luck in the world, she is all heart.

Congratulations to ZEN and all of Team Z, you deserved the win.

18 Jan 2011 2:44 PM
eightbelles

What a lovely article.

Between these extraordinary photos, and Horse of the Year honors, my heart is soaring.

I am so happy for dear Zenyatta and for all of her connections.

She is beautiful isn't she? I feel lucky and blessed to have been able to witness her journey.

Special thank you to the Mosses for sharing her with us and for taking such good care of her.

May God bless you forever lovely girl.

18 Jan 2011 2:44 PM
Donna Melendz from Grayslake, IL

Mr Haskin,   Once again, you have made my day with your wonderful writing telling us about our beloved Queen.  The pictures were fantastic, she looks so happy.  Thank you!

18 Jan 2011 2:44 PM
eightbelles

My favorite line from this article is: "Zenyatta still has a lot of her personality and loves to see people, but now she has become  used to being more of a horse - and she likes it".

I am so happy to hear that she is enjoying her new life and new friends. Especially her sweet buddy Pirate Queen.

18 Jan 2011 3:01 PM
smartysgal

Thanks for letting us visit Zenyatta with you, Steve!  You are one lucky sonofagun!  I wonder if she had a television in her barn so she could watch the Eclipse Awards and see "her people" applauding her and throwing compliments out to her!  What a great race mare and I'm sure she'll be a wonderful mama.  The pictures that arose in my mind as I read your blog would have been Eclipse winners as well!  Hail to the Queen!!

18 Jan 2011 3:04 PM
YES IT"S TRUE SHERRY

I can finally get back to checking out the new crop at the track now that the Racing Gods have been appeased. One of their own is Horse Of The Year! Life is good.

18 Jan 2011 3:06 PM
Diane J

One more thing - thank you for the wonderful photos.  Zenyatta is enjoying running free in her paddock, something the great Ruffian never got a chance to do. For me, Zenyatta helps fill the void of "what if" Ruffian had lived.  I'd like to think she would be as carefree as Zenyatta, but possibly not as sweet!  :)

18 Jan 2011 3:20 PM
PatB

I love that you are so in tune with what's happened to the sport because of Zenyatta and with what she represents to us.

18 Jan 2011 3:36 PM
Marigold

So, Charles Campbell is the "hottie" tht many of us fans were drooling over after the first photos of Zen were posted after she arrived at Lane's End.  He's the Broodmare Manager -- wow, he's young (and yummy).

Zenyatta, of course, is magnificent and I want to thank you for this beautifully written report of your visit to our beloved Queen.  We miss her on the racetrack and  hearing your wonderfully written account of your visit with her, helps to fill the hunger for information about her.  She is a National Treasure.  Her friend Pirate Queen is a big gal, too!  God Bless all the mares at Land's End but watch over our Zen and keep her safe and sound and healthy and happy please.

18 Jan 2011 3:40 PM
Michelle

Just wonderful - thank you.

18 Jan 2011 3:42 PM
sentinel

You don't know any of us but all of us out here love you and adore your writing.  You take us with you where we want to go.

Maybe someday I'll be able to read your work without crying all over it.

I hope Zenyatta be well and fertile and have a lovely baby.

18 Jan 2011 3:46 PM
Barbara W

Great writing, great information, and great photos!

I was so afraid she would be denied again, especially after they announced the win for Older Female. I was thinking, Is this going to be it...again?"

Then I cried tears of joy with Ann when she was announced HOY. Had to explain to my German Shepherd (nicknamed "Little Z" for her prancing) that sometimes Mommy cries when she's happy.

What a great night it was.

One interesting fact about the Guinness-- when we were in Ireland years ago, it was explained to us that Guinness is given to new mothers after they have their babies in the hospital. The slogan is "Guinness for Strength". Hmmmm... maybe John is really onto something here.

Please do not ever think Zenyatta will suffer from overexposure. We fans cannot get enough. Just look at the number of postings here and the 700 or so on her site.

Thanks be to God for sending her to us, Team Z for caring for her (in CA and KY), and to you, Steve, for "getting it".

18 Jan 2011 4:01 PM
Lena

Thank you for the update on Zenyatta. What about an update on Rachel Alexandra???

18 Jan 2011 4:04 PM
Zenyatta John

Wow - what a fine article on Horse of the Year Zenyatta . Thanks for bringing us the thoughts , sights, and feelings of the farm where the Champion now rests.

I can't wait to see the Mosses first choice of stud.

18 Jan 2011 4:12 PM
Carole K

We were anxiously awaiting this promised piece on your visit -- and you never disappoint. We hope you will fit at least quarterly visits to Zenyatta into your busy schedule. No one provides the color and texture as you do.

18 Jan 2011 4:18 PM
Soldier Course

All day I've been wishing that Bert Parks could magically appear at Lane's End and sing "There she is, Miss America ..." to Zenyatta.

I'd like to thank Dottie Ingordo-Shirreffs for her kind words of appreciation for Zenyatta's fans, spoken in a TVG interview just minutes after the announcement that Zenyatta was crowned Horse of the Year 2010. I will always believe that we made the critical difference in the outcome of that honor this time around.  

18 Jan 2011 4:19 PM
Carole K

The photos added so much to this informative piece. Thank you.

18 Jan 2011 4:19 PM
Zenyatta101

She won she won she won! Now who is gonna be the luck dude?

18 Jan 2011 4:28 PM
Cavendish

Very nice piece and I'm so happy that the 'Queen' is enjoying her richly deserved retirement from racing. It's interesting to note that Pirate Queen, her best buddy, was unplaced in three starts and won a grand total of $473. Seems that Zenyatta is as honest and unassuming in friendship as she was in competition.

18 Jan 2011 4:36 PM
Karen in Texas

smartysgal---Not sure about a television in the barn, but a report by an AP writer said that Ann Moss immediately used her "video phone" to call Zenyatta and convey the news after the announcement. I can try to link the article if you'd like.

18 Jan 2011 4:43 PM
Deemama

We were waiting for your article....... and were not disappointed.  Thank you AGAIN for writing so well about our favorite subject....Z.  We know you love her too.  So glad you shared this visit

18 Jan 2011 4:45 PM
Johnny

TY Seve:

I read on another blog regarding horse of the year. This person said to take out the emotion of it,how blind they are.

She was, is something truely special and I doubt we will ever see a stud [great]horse race into their 6 year old season again.

I have a lifetime memory with her and allready show her races to my 5 year old..

Congrats team Z for Hoy.. You deserve it..

18 Jan 2011 5:01 PM
Nancy

Your words wrought a rightness for Zenyatta's transition - a rightness for her and a comfort for her caring watchers - aligning perfectly with her earned Horse of the Year triumph

18 Jan 2011 5:03 PM
Sam Anderer

Steve,  Thank you for utilizing your wonderful talents to masterfully tell of your visit to see the wonderful Miss Z.  You received answers to many of the questions I have asked myself many times: about her reproduction status, and evaluations; about the background on the people around her; all the items and things those within the industry take for granted.  

I have been looking for the clocking time she ran the last furlong of the B.C. 2010 Classic. Do you know what the fraction was?

I am delighted she got HOTY.

The pix are fantastic.

God's blessing upon you and yours as you travel this year's Triple Crown Trail.  And as for dreams: 2015, a very sound, healthy A P Indy/Zenyatta son aiming for the Triple Crown trained by John Sherriffs.  (Could also be a filly, another for the history books.)

sam a

18 Jan 2011 5:04 PM
Horselover

What a great story.  I noticed she is down to just halter and lead rope.  She must be very comfortable and easy to handle now.  It's nice to see.  

18 Jan 2011 5:13 PM
Soldier Course

Nancy @ 5:03 18 Jan 2011:

Beautiful post.

18 Jan 2011 5:16 PM
Patricia G

Wow!  You would have thought I owned Z by my reaction to her winning HOY last night.  May the force and Gods be with her at Lanes End.  I'm truly looking forward to seeing her babies.

Thanks to Steve for blogging about Z and sharing those photos with us. Lovely. I think and hope she'll have a wonderful life at Lanes End.

Pat G.

18 Jan 2011 5:17 PM
Rhonda from Saskatchewan

Yaaaaaay Zenyatta!

HORSE OF THE YEAR! At last.

Thanks, Mr. Haskin, for your heartfelt article. It is so very clear that you are so much more than just a journalist when you wax poetic about this amazing mare.

She is just so darn special.

We can only wish her a safe journey up to and including motherhood and hope that she doesn't spend all of her remaining years as a baby factory. She deserves so much more that that.

Good Luck Zenyatta.

Luv ya heaps.

18 Jan 2011 5:23 PM
CHoffman

Zenyatta's winter coat is the horse  equivalent of "sweatpants, tshirt and uggs."  Welcome to the quiet world of Mommydom where looking comfortable is the height of fashion.

18 Jan 2011 5:25 PM
Lou in TX

Steve, you did it again. A wonderful article about a wonderful mare, Queen Zenyatta. It is so reassuring that she is doing so well seeing it thru your eyes. Love the photos. I think she will always love people. She seems to just be that kind, loving horse we all saw her to be. Now that's she's been voted HOY we can all settle back and enjoy the rest of her ride. Congrats to Team Z and all those involves with the Queen.

18 Jan 2011 5:29 PM
filly

I am sure her fans would love a weekly SKYPE or webcam session as everyone understands the importance of not bringing germs in the farm. I hope someone as young as Charles that has spent all of his time on farms understands the importance of educating her 60,000 fans in the next 14 months-especially that she is now HOTY. There are many folks that are interested in learning about horses and this is a great opportunity to educate folks of all ages and levels.

18 Jan 2011 5:38 PM
Pam S.

More comments than you could have imagined?  Nah, Steve, you don't mean that!

Thank you for the wonderful and detailed information about our Queen, the 2010 Horse of the Year.  Right now everything is just about perfect in Zenyattaland.

You know the person who yelled out "Bring her back!" at the awards dinner last night?  They need to read this blog.  We will always miss Zenyatta's thrilling presence on the racetrack, but the farm is her home now and she has a new life, full of friends and fun and one day motherhood.  Thanks again for telling us about it.

18 Jan 2011 6:02 PM
dddundalk

Thank you, Mr. Haskin, thank you.  It was a wonderful article and you do, in fact, give great photo!!!

You also shone some light on a situation that her fans may have to come to terms with - the fact that we carry germs and bacteria and could endanger her and/or her foal by insisting on up-close contact with her.  

I would love to be able to kiss her nose, but not at the risk of her health.  To preserve that, I would love her from a distance - and I think most of her fans would say the same - even if it's a disappointment to us.

18 Jan 2011 6:08 PM
sherpa

I rushed home from work and turned on the computer, feeling sure you'd have a new blog up today with a report about your visit to Zenyatta.  Yes! Now, before I go back and start reading the 230+ comments already posted, I want to say this is exactly the report I'd hoped for.  All the little details of her new daily life that I've wondered about: her schedule, her new friends (equine & feline), her caretakers, Capone (poor guy!), what she's eating and all the rest.  Most especially, that she's really enjoying her new life and environment.  You covered it all, you answered all my questions.

Thank you so much, Steve!

18 Jan 2011 6:16 PM
sherpa

P.S. - the pictures are great, too!!!

18 Jan 2011 6:18 PM
SHAKATH

Thank you!!!!. I hope you get to visit often and continue to pen such beautiful articles about a beautiful horse.

18 Jan 2011 6:49 PM
Lise from Maine

Bonjour Zenyatta!

I watched the Eclipse Awards last evening on TVG, and was really concerned that you would not win the Horse of the Year Award.

You are fortunate that you have great owners who truly love you plus your trainer, etc.

I was so thrilled to hear that you finally won it.

Congratulations, Zenyatta!

I read the article by Steve Haskin where he, his wife, and David Ingordo visited you recently, and I appreciate the revelations in his article, and the photos are fantastic.

Thank you Mr. Haskin.

Sounds like you are making quite a transformation into a new life and have made new friends. I would love to see a video of you rolling around in the mud.

I hope that your lovely personality continues to be gracious in your new role as a

"horse."

All the testing revealed in Mr. Haskin's article is a bit of a worry to me but I know that it needs to be done.

I still miss you Zenyatta.

I don't believe there will be another Zenyatta in horse racing for some time to come.

How I wish I could come and visit you and feed you, too. Kentucky is far away from Maine.

It sounds like you are being well taken of, and I am eager to see your first baby.

Lots of love to you, Zenyatta!

18 Jan 2011 6:52 PM
Lucy

Thanks for the great article Steve!!  Was absolutely thrilled to see her get HOY!

I also agree with Lena though..any chance we could get an update on Rachel's retirement?  I'd love to see pictures of her just getting to be a horse too..

18 Jan 2011 7:11 PM
markinsac

Thanks for explaining all that to us Mr Haskin.  15 years from, her fans will still be looking forward to updates on her well-being.  Of course, by then, at least one of her offspring, maybe one of her little girls will win the triple crown or a BC Classic!

18 Jan 2011 7:11 PM
Ida Lee

The Queen got officially crowned last night which is a good thing because before long she'll be the Queen Mum!! Thank you so much for this great article.  If I can't go see her yet, this is the second best thing...seeing her through your eyes. The pictures are great too.  It's almost unbelievable to me how an animal, a horse, has become so important to so many people. I want nothing but the best for her and follow what she's doing every day at Zenyatta.com. We should all be so greatful to her connections for allowing us to continue having this American Treasure as a part of our lives.

18 Jan 2011 7:26 PM
ppammy

Did they keep any of Secretariat's sperm?  Sure would love to see what that pair could create!  She's in a class by herself, deserves every accolade she gets, and our respect regarding visiting and her health.  So long as we can keep track via the web, I hope most of us will be happy with that kind of visiting.  You go "Z" girl!  Can't wait to meet your hubs, and see the offspring!

18 Jan 2011 7:27 PM
Daina

Steve - thanks so much for the update on Zenyatta.  I was so sad to see her leave the racetrack but I'm OK now.  She really does look at peace - happy.  And to top it off she WON.  I have to say thank you to the voters for really thinking this through and I can only imagine how hard it was - Blame is a terrific horse and deserved the votes he received but the way I thought about it was -- who really stood out in 2010? Who came to mind first?  Who was the most consistent? Who was the most dynamic?  Who did I judge all other horses against? Who really was the best horse in the 2010 Breeders Cup Classic?  The only answer I could come up with was Zenyatta.  AND THEN SHE WON - HALLELUJAH!! I wept in relief and I think I was about as excited as Jerry and Ann Moss.  Well - I slept like a baby afterwards. I felt like something really good happened in the world last night.

18 Jan 2011 7:27 PM
Early Speed

I stayed up late to find out if Zen "did it," and when I found out she got HOY, I danced around the apartment yelling YES! at the top of my lungs. My pet Sheltie ran around with me wondering what was wrong with her human.

Zenyatta, like Personal Ensign, will prove to be a blue hen, and it won't matter who she is bred to, really. She will be the one that improves the stallion!

18 Jan 2011 7:42 PM
Early Speed

standpoint is if anyone comes here who has been on a farm that’s had strangles or Herpes virus or any of those airborne

Hey guys, I think they mean horses with those infections, not people.

18 Jan 2011 7:43 PM
Dani

I was going to say what sherpa said, but he said it better than I could have said it so I will just say I agree with him 100percent. You've answered all my questions too! Now I can really be content to know for sure that Zenyatta is living a very happy life on the farm and that she is in loving and caring hands.

18 Jan 2011 7:54 PM
DinkyDiva

WoooooHooooooo  Horse of the Year; Zenyatta!!!!!!   I am so proud!  

Steve, thank you for sharing your visit with us and up-dating all of her fans!  Your wife is a Lucky Gal.  Now, if we can just find out who the Lucky Guy will be!!!!  Do you already know the answer??  Hint, Hint...   :)

18 Jan 2011 8:04 PM
John H

Great article on the Queen. There are some who don't recognize greatness even as it stares them in the face. Let's have pity on the only bloc of voters who voted against her - the Daily Racing Form. They need to rethink what racing needs... more "people" horses like Zenyatta.

18 Jan 2011 8:20 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Mary Stone

   Eating waffles, watching The Donna Reed Show, and basking in the glory of Zenyatta's HOY. Now don't tell me I've nothin' to do.

18 Jan 2011 8:50 PM
pozguy

The STD counselor on a Herpes support site herpesmate.com said herpes doesn't live outside the body for long..and you can not catch it from inanimate objects in a VERY RARE case if someone with herpes uses a towel after the shower and rubs enough of the "virus" off and someone uses it immediately after there is a VERY slim chance of them getting is since the towel is still damp.. but that would be a very rare occurrence.

18 Jan 2011 8:58 PM
MRO

Beautiful and timely story. Keep the updates & photos coming!

18 Jan 2011 8:59 PM
Darlene

I appreciate sooo much the connection we here in So. Calif. made with this wonderful mare is being kept alive for us now that she's entering retirement and motherhood .....we would be lost without contact with her at this point and were so worried we would not hear of her anymore, but with her diary and people like you, we are still included in her life....again, thanks .....

18 Jan 2011 9:01 PM
jockeygirl

those are the best photos i have ever seen of the queen!!!!!

18 Jan 2011 9:03 PM
Racingfan

THANK YOU Steve for the wonderful update and photos of QUEEN Zenyatta!!  I find myself still really missing the fact that she won't be racing anymore, so it's wonderful to hear news about her! Your writing always takes us along for the ride!  I was so nervous watching the awards on TVG last night - afraid she was gonna get overlooked again. I, like others posting, am THRILLED that she finally got her due! If more people had looked at her accomplishments like you did in your HOTY write-up, it would have been a landslide!  I don't expect there will be another like her in my lifetime (if ever), but I am so thankful to have been able to experience her thru tv and the writing of those like you who took us there!  Thank you!

18 Jan 2011 9:04 PM
Cathleen

Thanks Steve. Besides her diary posts on Zenyatta.com, this is by far the best update on our Queen! You are so lucky to have visited her and thank you for sharing with us how she'd doing and all the photos.

18 Jan 2011 9:14 PM
LauraJ

A Challenge to Zenyatta Fans

Dear fellow Zenyatta fans,

The 2010 Eclipse Awards are in the history books, and our Queen has been named Horse of the Year. Among her many accomplishments, she has been credited with bringing new fans to horse racing and rekindling the passion in many others. But her legacy won’t be complete unless we fans, new and old, stay in the game. While we are celebrating, let’s think about what we can do to ensure that her future foals will have places to run and fans to cheer them on. Let’s honor Zenyatta by supporting the industry and horses to which she gives so much. I challenge each and every one of us to do the following:

1. Become a fan of at least one active racehorse. It doesn’t matter which one—use any criteria you choose. You could pick a consistent winner, or one whose connections you admire, or one who tries hard, or one that’s pretty, etc. Don’t forget the hard knockers at your local track. They are the backbone of racing, and they try hard every time. (Lives have been saved by attentive fans who saw their favorites tumbling through the claiming ranks, and got them help before they wound up on trucks going over the border.)

2. Do you go to the races? If you live near a racetrack, go at least once this year. Spend money. Pay for parking, buy food, get something from the gift shop. If you are 18 or over, place a few bets. Under the current business model, horse racing can’t survive unless people wager. That’s where the purse money, which supports the horses and the people around them, comes from. Don’t know how? Every track’s website has a “wagering 101” section, and every track has a handicapper who will be happy to show you the ropes.

3. Support an equine charity. Any one will do; just make sure it’s a 501(c)3 for your safety and that of the horses. There are retraining programs, retirement facilities, folks who pull horses from feedlots, researchers working on horse health issues, and so on. Your local SPCA or Humane Society may rescue horses. All equine charities need help. No dollar amount is too small; just $5 will buy a bale of hay. Many need “stuff” too, such as office supplies, tools, even professional services. You can also volunteer your time.

4. Strive to be as good and kind as Zenyatta herself, and as gracious and classy as her connections. Yes, it’s corny, but so what?  Let’s make the world a better place for people and horses. We can start by not gloating. We can welcome Goldikova back in 2011 and wish Blame a successful stud career and a long, happy life. We can finally get past 2008 and 2009, and wish beautiful babies for Curlin and Rachel Alexandra.

Let’s do our gal proud!

18 Jan 2011 9:21 PM
OraJean Stevenson

Steve, What a wonderful article.  Your words paint a thousand pictures !!  ...a true talent.  Thank you for this lovely 'peek' into Zenyatta's life as a brood-mare.  Fondly,  OraJean  

18 Jan 2011 9:25 PM
Karen in Indiana

Thank you, Steve, for your thoughts on Zenyatta and the update. There is a time and place for everything and I think what you're saying is it's time to let go of the Queen and say hello to the horse. She has given so much to us, it gives joy to know she's happy just being herself. The video of her being loose in the paddock for the first time had me crying.

Personally, I'd go through whatever sterilization procedures Lane's End would enact to keep her safe and healthy. I'd even be happy standing in an observation booth. Heck, even a webcam would be fine with me. If Lane's End does figure out a way to deal with all of her fans in a way that keeps her healthy, they will be going above and beyond what has been traditional for a broodmare and it will be much appreciated.

18 Jan 2011 9:40 PM
Paula Higgins

Great story, full of information and the pictures are beautiful. Thanks Steve. This story is the cherry on the sundae after her win last night of HOTY. She looks so happy with her friend Pirate Queen. It gladdens my heart. As for visiting her, whatever is in her best interests is what should happen, and I am sure will happen. That's what we all want. Congratulations to Ann, Jerry, John, Dottie, Mario, Carmen and all of Barn 55 on Zenyatta's win of HOTY. It is so thoroughly deserved.

18 Jan 2011 9:49 PM
ctgreyhound

A fairly tale ending in every way for the queen of racing.  And your "happily ever after" story hit just the right note, Steve. Amen Hallelujah! (Oh, that's another horse...)

18 Jan 2011 9:54 PM
mookies hero

Just a beautiful article and a beautiful horse. Thanks you for all the details and for keeping us informed. Do you know the stallion and if not what would be your pick? Mine would be Big Brown or their own Giacomo. But you would know better.

thanks again

18 Jan 2011 9:59 PM
Sue M

@Especially horses - wow, that mirrors my early years. I read every horse book imaginable (love CW Anderson and also Walter Farley :), and was enthralled with the stories of famous race horses. Even though I've followed racing for years and love to ride myself, I'd never been to see Thoroughbreds run. I'd been reading about Z, but when I watched her win the BC in 2009, I began planning for the 2010 BC to see her. There was something so wonderful about the way she blew past the competition in that race, I knew she was special. So my husband and I did go to see her run last November. It was the most electric, exciting event I've ever been witnessed. Z was magnificent. (and we saw her the next day at her stall and met John S.)

You are right in that she's our own Man O' War, or even Secretariat. I was 16 when I watched him win the Belmont and I cried then, but Z I was privileged and lucky enough to see in the flesh.

18 Jan 2011 10:16 PM
Abigail A

Re-vision: I meant to communicate in my previous comment how wonderful it was to see the photos of Zen with her new friend. I had been searching & searching for photos of "Zen's posse" but there were almost none posted. Being able to see her with her best buddy added even more warmth to an already moving text. It made me smile and smile. It just means so much to know that Zenny is safe, happy and loved.

18 Jan 2011 10:19 PM
Don in Massachusetts

Thanks for the wonderful article about our HORSE OF THE YEAR, Queen Zenyatta, along with your photos, Steve.

A superb job as usual. Bravo!

18 Jan 2011 10:25 PM
BarMar

Mr. Haskin,

Is there a way we might be able to purchase these photos that you have posted here in your blog?  I am interested in purchasing some of them.  Please let me know :).

18 Jan 2011 10:35 PM
Vicki

what a GREAT article...I feel as though I was right there with you.  We love Zen so much and enjoy keeping up with her daily but this article was supurb, great info...thanks

18 Jan 2011 10:50 PM
Anne from Paramount CA

Such a wonderful article- you have us all feeling as though we were there with you, and we learned so much along the way. I can only echo what everyone else has said. I, too, screamed and jumped for joy when HOY was announced. I am one of the lucky ones who visited Barn 55: THANKS TO EVERYONE "related" to the Queen. Such gracious, classy people. May you have a wonderful new life, Zenyatta. Ours will sure be different now. Loved, loved the photos and meeting her new friends. Thanks, Steve!!!

18 Jan 2011 10:53 PM
Janie Rupp

What a wonderful story.I have been in the business for 25 years. This is the best of times. I followed Cigar, now we have this wonderful mare to adore. I was with you every step of your way to see her. The fact that she is adjusting to her new life style is a testoment to her intelligance. Long live the QUEEN. Thank you

18 Jan 2011 11:03 PM
Diana_NV

Thanks, Steve, for another great and heartfelt piece.  I never doubted that Mama Z would make a wonderful broodmare.  She's been so well-cared for and nutured by people with long term vision, not short term profit.  She's the hope diamond for the horse racing industry, and I can't wait for the little sparkles to start coming!

18 Jan 2011 11:11 PM
rams2050

Here is a link to the video of the Eclipse Awards and Team Zenyatta accepting the trophy for their horse.

You won't be disappointed!

Be sure to watch all the way to the end, because the end is worth waiting for!

www.youtube.com/watch

18 Jan 2011 11:53 PM
Pam W.

Thank you so much for your wonderful article and pictures. I'm always so grateful for news about our Zenyatta, and it's such fun to read about her through your eyes. She's a special girl, and I hope that you will keep us posted about Z in the future.

19 Jan 2011 12:31 AM
dogcathorse

Great update on Zenyatta.   it would be nice to know whatever happened to Rachel Alexandra. It showes however the class of the Mosses and Shireffs. Too bad the Rachel team did not have the same class.It seems like she just fell off the radar.

19 Jan 2011 1:03 AM
Trooper

Thanks for the great article, But I just lost my job and I am sure she misses the track and all of her friends that were there. Horses have amazing memories and she will never forget any of it. She is starting a new life that is not so exciting and I am sure she will always miss RUNNING in front of a crowd. Long live the Queen...........

19 Jan 2011 1:37 AM
Sparkette

What a wonderful article & pictures of the lovely Zenyatta! Thank you, Mr. Haskin!  She SO deserved HOY!  How I wish she could be bred to the great ''Curlin''!!

19 Jan 2011 2:19 AM
Dallas from Texas

Is it me or what...saying "Queen Z" takes on a totally different meaning now since Jan 17th.  I personally believe this should have been her third HOY victory!  Racing will not be the same...just greater because of the great Zenyatta, what a name for a most beautiful baby!

19 Jan 2011 3:34 AM
Dr Drunkinbum

How many flies did Jerry and Ann Moss catch when the winner was announced? What a classic photo. It's got to be in the running for Picture of the Year (POY). This could be the beginning of a very good year Louie.

Fran Losynski

   I like it !!!! Zensational Dancer or even just Zensational. You're on to something. Good job. You are a true Haskenite.

19 Jan 2011 3:41 AM
TripleCrownKaren

I don't knwo which is better.....the fact that "THE QUEEN" finally GOT the HOY honors she so richly deserved OR   This article on her retirement!   Once again, a glorious piece by my favorite writer!   Thanks Steve!

19 Jan 2011 8:23 AM
craig

steve....as usual, a very nice story finds the big mare enjoying her new environs 2000 miles from her former home.....beautiful!!

19 Jan 2011 10:02 AM
Penny in TX

What a wonderful article on Zenyatta.

The pictures are beautiful and she does look happy and content. You can tell everyone loves her. I am so glad the is getting to be a horse and making new horse friends. What more could you ask for. In one picture with Pirate Queen I could just imagine what they could be talking about, maybe babies to come. I am so glad she now has a good friend in Pirate Queen. Zenyatta, congratulations on being the horse of the year!

19 Jan 2011 10:22 AM
Steve Haskin

Bar Mar, these photos are meant to be shared, not profited from. If you wish to download any of them and make up your own prints, feel free to do so.

Thank you, everyone, for your comments. I really appreciate the support and kind words. I realize how fortunate I am, and all I attempt to accomplish as a writer is to bring the fans to where I am and let them share in the experience as much as possible.

19 Jan 2011 10:30 AM
sherpa

LauraJ -

Your comment of 18 Jan 9:21 PM was precisely what I've been wanting to say.  I sincerely hope racing's enthusiastic and energetic new fans - so many brought into the fold by Zenyatta - will read and take it to heart.  Along with all her gifts, Zen presented us with a new responsibility to the Sport of Kings AND Queens and, most of all, to the Horses and their caretakers who make it possible.  

19 Jan 2011 10:40 AM
txhorsefan

So many of you have left beautiful comments and your heartfelt appreciation for Steve's blog, I wish my brain worked better at remembering each individual one but there are so many that really stand out, I know I'll miss some of my favorites so I'll just say thank you all for sharing and being part of my Zenyatta experience, too.  Happy Birthday, a day late, to Robin.  Especially Horses - wow!  Linda in Texas - you always say what is in my heart that I can't express as do many of the rest of you.  Laura J - I like your challenge to her fans and I too think we need to keep supporting the horses.  Sorry my brain isn't quite in gear this morning, so I'll quit before I ramble too much more, but thank you all for your great comments!  It's so much fun to be here to celebrate together!

19 Jan 2011 10:45 AM
Linda in Texas

Thank you Steve for the detailed report and personal photos of your and Mrs. Haskin's visit with Zenyatta and her new best friend, Pirate Queen, a gray i might add, my favorite.

I bet Pirate Queen has never had a best mare friend like Zenyatta.

It is obvious they complement each other perfectly.

The daily/hourly schedule of the different 'goings on' at Lane's End is interesting. Seems no detail is left unattended to.

And that is so reassuring to know.

LauraJ - well written suggestions on how to make racing better and to attract more fans and to help the industry by supporting the horses, or just pick a couple, and the claimers especially need help.

Sometimes simply by word of mouth someone will come to their rescue and give them a second and oft times a third chance.

Dr Drunkinbum - a little 127 Proof Jamaican Rum in the maple syrup on your waffles will make even your heart sing! It does wonders for fruit cakes, too. It is my secret ingredient. Just a suggestion. :)

And Dr. D you are so right in the photo when Zen was announced the winner, Mr. Moss was obviously taken by surprise and so also Mrs. Moss. It is a super photo.

I read that Mrs. Moss was wearing a tag that will adorn the new foals' halter when 'it' is born.

They think of everything. Truly sensitive human beings and so thoughtful to let us all into their lives as they have. That is a rare trait and a treat i might add.

And Yes, to the poster who said, "they get it." They really do.

Zenyatta's chapters will change with each new life experience for her. She was late in filling out her size, she was late in racing as she was trained late,she ran well into her sixth year, and now at 6+ she will hopefully be in foal soon. It's all a good thing.

She is an Aries and her birthday is April 1.

Thanks so much Steve. We are all so glad that you never took emotion out of your writings and brought all of us along for the Zenyatta ride through your words.

I know there will be more chapters to her life and you will be right there with her and for us.

19 Jan 2011 11:55 AM
WWSTP

I wonder if it is at all possible for Zenyatta to move into a new career as a mom, rather than a constant baby machine?  I wonder, if she was given the opportunity to keep and raise her foal, what she would be able to teach him or her if given the opportunity.  I was so happy for Zenyatta's new career until I remembered that traditionally the foals are taken from the moms and fostered out while the mare gets pregnant again.  When I realized this I understood what a huge piece is missing and not regarded as important in this breeding system.  "Mothering" is so important for the mare and the foal, and it seems to be a totally disregarded piece.  With ALL that Zenyatta is, I would think that she would have so much to pass on to her foals...which would be unique to Zenyatta and perhaps even "other worldy wise".  I'd like to see her given the chance to do what she does with mothering, and see what the result is.

19 Jan 2011 12:10 PM
Linda in Texas

txhorsefan - your words are heart felt as so many are and we all understand everything you write.

Thank you.

And to your words "it's so much fun to be here to celebrate together"!

I cannot agree with you more.

It is just so heart warming to know we are not alone and have company in the special interests that we have and i think that is a big part of what makes Steve's Hangin' With Haskin Community Blog

so unusual.

19 Jan 2011 12:12 PM
Darla Burton

You did it again, Steve.....best writer at The Bloodhorse!!!

19 Jan 2011 12:21 PM
WWSTP

Dogcathorse - I am so happy most of the RA vs. Zen contention has worn itself out.  Given, now, that Zen has been given her full due, and rightly so, I too have felt the resoudning silent hole that RA's retirement created.  I think her team could have done more, but also how about the writers.  How about racing promoters?  How does a HOY retire, especially with her exceptional and un-precendented 3rd year, in such a hush and without some kind of fanfare??..some kind of clear acknowledgement for what she brought to racing? Some kind of "thank you". I do believe Zenyatta stands head and shoulders above any greatness we have seen in decades, perhaps ever.  Yet, over the last few years we've been blessed in racing with tremendous greatness and record breaking accomplishments that have put us in a state of awe and wonder.  I hope we never forget ALL the shifts and changes some of this greatness has gifted to this industry!

19 Jan 2011 12:33 PM
Polly

Thank you Steve for sharing your visit with Z.  This morning I was listening to the horse racing radio show and two callers were bickering back and forth about Z winning HOY over Blame.   For all those who thought BLame should have won HOY--he did win--he will forever be remembered as the horse who defeated the great Zenyatta.  That one race will forever be a measurement of his greatness.  

19 Jan 2011 1:06 PM
lynn russell

great article she looks happy so glad she won hoy what an amazing animal and the people around her seem like they love and care for her greatly.

19 Jan 2011 1:32 PM
Dianne

Thank you, thank you for sharing the visit and photos of Zenyatta.

19 Jan 2011 1:32 PM
Serena

LauraJ:  what wonderful sentiments!  Thank you for your kind and generous thoughts.  You are 150% right in supporting the sport, even in small ways (every great journey begins with the first step)  and how sweet that you encourage nothing but good thoughts, no gloating and best wishes for the horses that have been in the forefront of our collective minds and hearts these past few years.  BRAVO !!!

19 Jan 2011 1:41 PM
Rachel

dogcathorse: from what I understand  (in my very limited knowledge)Jess Jackson has been battling health issues, perhaps he could use our best wishes and get well soon.

PS do you know how many millions he has raised for charities, especially children???

19 Jan 2011 2:01 PM
Deacon

Congrats to the connections of the great Queen for winning HOTY. She is truly deserving, and yes she is horse of the decade as well. What blows me away is the reverence folks hold for you, she has souls like no other. For all she did for us, all she gave, and the fact that she helped save the sport if even for a little while, this is our way of saying thank you. The love we all have for her trancends anything I have ever seen or experienced. Every Zenyatta blog has hundreds of posts and wonderful comments. Glad to see she is doing so well in her new surroundings. We all miss her, too bad she couldn't race forever. I think she is more appreciated now then when she was racing. Never see the likes of her again...........

Happy New Year to all and thanks Steve for a well written article....

19 Jan 2011 2:12 PM
Lori

I'm with txhorsefan!!  Thanks to you, Steve, we can ALL be here together celebrating on your blog, hollerin' to the rafters on how thrilled we are about Z's HoY win!!!!   The whole day yesterday I could not think - even had to go to bed early as was so worn out from the headspin I had going since the moment the envelope was opened at the Eclipse Awards.  Oh, the high of it!  The fabulousness of it!  The happiness of it!  The towering mare has her crown at last!   I loved your writing, Steve, the pictures, and all the comments - seems Z's legacy is ensured as so many people adore her!  IMAGINE THE FOAL!!!!   What will the Mosses name it?  I hope she's a filly:)   Take care, Steve, thanks again for the visit - I vicariously went along too, via your words:)   Z's story is going to just keep getting better....the Mosses must be just beside themselves w joy and pride.

19 Jan 2011 2:32 PM
ceil

To WWSTP:  Foals are not traditionally taken away from their mothers and put on nurse mares unless there is a problem (mare tries to kill baby, mare has serious health problem, mare is not producing enough milk, mare is very old, etc.) Most broodmares have their foal and raise it themselves. Given Zenyatta's sweet nature, age and overall good health, I'd expect her to raise her colt and do very well.      

19 Jan 2011 2:42 PM
MRO

LauraJ -

Thanks for reminding us of wonderful ways to show our support for Zenyatta by continuing as active fans of the sport. I have 2 Beulah Park horses on my active fan list: Catlaunch & Littlemissblondie. Wishing them and all others safety and success in 2011.

19 Jan 2011 2:49 PM
Lise from Maine

Hi!

I would love to purchase a professional DVD of Zenyatta's life.

How about it Bloodhorse?

Thank you!

19 Jan 2011 2:49 PM
bowlofflowers

Yet another "Thank You and great news", Steve.  The very real threat that broodmares could catch disease from humans was very interesting - a special thank you about that.  Also love hearing about Zenyatta's daily routine and new friends.  And I will third the request that you visit Rachael A. to let us know how she is doing since her connections won't make the effort.  She doesn't need a website or daily blog but something for her fans.  I was really thinking that Blame was going to be voted HOY but was elated to see that 5 Grade 1 wins this year made a difference.

19 Jan 2011 2:58 PM
Stephanie Clare

Lovely story, Steve.  I can read about Zenyatta all day long.  Please visit her again soon and write about her more.  

19 Jan 2011 2:59 PM
Vicky

Thank you, Steve.  Lovely report and thanks for sharing.  So glad to hear she's adjusting and happy in her new life.

19 Jan 2011 3:09 PM
MonicaV

WWSTP,

I wouldn't think that Zenyatta will be a baby machine.  I'm sure they will breed her more than once but I don't see them breeding her every year unless they plan to auction the foals. I kind of doubt that.  I think she means to much to them to sell her offspring.  

Her foals will stay with her until it is time to wean them.

19 Jan 2011 3:11 PM
Jeanne from Texas

Steve, you are the greatest writer ever; I've said it before and I continue to believe it; and thanks to "txhorsefan" because I'm another Texas horse fan that so loves Zenyatta.  Thank you to all the people who have left messages here because I just couldn't have come up with all the adjectives, accolades, admiration each one of you has shared.  Amazing love for an amazintg horse....Zenyatta~!!!

19 Jan 2011 3:35 PM
WWSTP

Ceil and MonicaV - thanks for your comments on this.  I hope, deeply hope, that is the case.  I've heard so much to the contrary...not regarding Zenyatta but mares in general.  What a joy it will be to watch and support Zenyatta in ALL her mothering glory!

19 Jan 2011 3:42 PM
julieo

Thank you for this (and all the other articles).   I smiled all the way through, I am so happy Zenyatta gets to be a horse and that her safety and happiness are the top concerns.    I am so happy she is the Horse of the Year!   The pictures are great as well.   Steve, thank you for your generosity with Zenyatta- your access to her gave us access too.  You are such a credit to this sport and your writing is unmatched.   You love thoroughbreds and horse racing, which is why I never miss your blogs.   Thank you.

19 Jan 2011 3:52 PM
judy hughes

What a wonderful srticle!  Thanks

so much.  I'm so grateful that she

won Horse of the Year.  It everything complete, even here in Pahrump, NV.

19 Jan 2011 4:08 PM
sodapopkid

ONe things for certain,  When LE calls the Mosses and tells them ZEnyatta is getting ready to deliver,  They will be one the next plane out to KEntucky,   Ann Moss will be right there to see that first grandchild (foal) baby Zenyatta.

19 Jan 2011 4:10 PM
Freetex

I am thrilled about the Voice of the People Award that will start with Zenyatta as the first recipient.  

Thanks to Penny Chenery!

19 Jan 2011 4:36 PM
shesfast

Steve I have an idea for your next show if you guys do a valentines show. You guys could do an early Zenyatta dating show in one of your segments. I dont even remember what that show was called but i think you know where i am going.

19 Jan 2011 4:42 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Rachel

   Very good point.

Linda In Texas

    You always make me smile. Thanks. You must make one heck of a fruitcake. I do remember as a kid that there were certain fruitcakes I wasn't allowed to eat. I didn't know exactly why then but they were for adults only. They let me have a sip from their beer but the fruitcake was off limits. They probably used your recipe. Happy Trails.

19 Jan 2011 4:43 PM
Rhonda from Saskatchewan

When I was so busy extolling all of the virtues of the peerless Zenyatta we all love a couple of days ago, I totally forgot to say my piece about the fabulous and courageous Goldikova who is also without peer. If Zenyatta is the Queen of horse racing then Goldikova must surely be the Tsarina.

19 Jan 2011 4:55 PM
Barbara W

Thank you, Penny Chenery, for inaugurating the Vox Populi award on behalf of our dear Z. What  ladies you both are! And what class.

I'm just thinking of the principle of reaping and sowing--Jerry and Ann and all of Team Z are reaping the reward for their selflessness and love for the horses AND fans. Michael Blowen must be thrilled for them as well.

19 Jan 2011 5:31 PM
jayjay

I'm so glad to hear how Lane's End is handling Zenyatta, the fact that they are putting her well being as their priority but also keeping in mind the fans shows they're trying to do the right thing all around.  Kudos to Jerry and Ann for picking the right place for her.

Steve : I have been waiting for this article ever since I heard that you were off to visit her.  I hope your flight wasn't all that bad with all the snow over there.  I think you are one classy gentleman, I've said before, a true genuine horseman.  I hope you keep writing about her and keep us fans informed of whatever inside information you can get.  In my opinion, your articles about her is the 2nd best thing to actually seeing her as you make us all feel like we're there.  The photos are great, she looks fantastic and I love the fact that she is now a horse, and loving it.  She's earned it and deserves it.  I still wish that they would let her go on vacation from her new crib to visit her fans, would love to see Mike on her again even if it's just to parade in front of her fans here in Cali and over there in the east coast.  Thanks again for sharing this, I feel much more comfortable now.  Information like this, you can't read on the news, only you can put the words together and make us fans know that she's really doing well.

Also, please extend my thanks to David Ingordo and Charles Campbell, and to Team Z for bringing us a once a lifetime horse.  Congrats to Team Z for the HOTY award and the Merit award, they all deserved it for the way they handled Zen.  They raised her well :)

Laura J : Kudos to your challenge, I make my donations to my local track almost every weekend thanks to Russell Baze, who always ruin my trifecta and superfecta bets.  Someday, I'll hit one with his horse in the right spot!!!!

19 Jan 2011 5:35 PM
sherpa

I finally located Mr. Haskin's FB page and saw all the Zen pictures he took at LE. So much fun!  (but you should've got at least one of yourself in there, Steve). Thank you again!

Zenny's coat has sure grown out fast.  She does appear to have some "dings" on her, but I guess that's to be expected.  Steve, do you know if "Alys" is the same who used to be a resident of Barn 55 (I think, owned either by the Wygods or the Mosses)?  PQ looks like a sweetie.  Hope she got a mint, too!

19 Jan 2011 5:39 PM
Jenna M

I have read your blog multiple times since yesterday and it just makes me smile, it makes me very happy to know that Zenyatta's life is so wonderful. Someone way up top made some mention of Z being locked away as a broodmare. I really don't think she will be cloistered forever. The Mosses seem to have a very personal, human connection to Z--I think we will see her at some point.  I also don't think she'll be overbred. (It said a lot, to me, that Mr. Moss read that statement by Priscilla Clark then kissed the page. Very telling.)

It makes me sad that I didn't ever get to see her, especially since she's on my coast now :> But, we'll see.

Thank you so much, Steve.

19 Jan 2011 6:04 PM
Janie

Thanks, Steve, for the great article and pictures.

I follow Zenyatta's (almost) daily blog on her website because there's lots of good info and pictures that she (really Dottie) shares with her fans.  It's a great way to get your Zenyatta fix!  SO GLAD she won Horse of the Year - but she really is a horse of a lifetime.  And I'm so glad that so many people love her as much as I do!

19 Jan 2011 6:14 PM
Beatrice Lian

Beatifully written & love the photos!Enjoyed the candid comments by Charles as well. Very interesting learning about the nuances concerning the breeding niche of the industry.

Thank you, Steve. Look forward to continued updates & photos of our precious beauty!

19 Jan 2011 6:47 PM
Robert

Once again, thank you Steve, for such an informative, educational and well-written article

19 Jan 2011 6:58 PM
NancyP

Hi Steve,

I know this is off the subject, but do you have information as to what caused War Pass's death?  The last I read it was inconclusive without explanation as to what they were looking for.

Thank you,

NancyP

19 Jan 2011 7:17 PM
Jackalyn

Wonderful account with lots of detail of her life at Lane's End- just what her fans needed- and 2 healthy ovaries- can't wait to see this foal. Thank you.

19 Jan 2011 7:27 PM
Householder

It looks like she is telling Pirate Queen "Pay attention. This is how you win races."  

19 Jan 2011 7:44 PM
DinkyDiva

Steve, did Charles mention at all how she is to catch?  She has a few boo-boos too..  Perhaps,the girls got a lil rough playing?!

19 Jan 2011 7:56 PM
Householder

What goes around comes around...Winning Colors simply ran the Moss' campained Ruhlmann off his feat in the Santa Anita Derby with 22 1/5, 45 3/5, 109 2/5 fractions.  Ruhlmann would go on to do great things like beat Easy Goer and Sunday Silence.  However, his best race may have been the Santa Anita Derby where he beat the girl favorite and monster in her own right Bayakoa who finished dead last.  It would be some 20 years before Zenyatta would top both the earnings and graded stakes record that Bayokoa had set for filly/mares.  

19 Jan 2011 8:10 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Another great piece from our Steve! And the best thing is that Mrs. Steve got to see Zenyatta.  I am happy about Steve's report that Zenyatta seems a happy horse, but does anyone else feel it is so "coldly clinical" a life?  Probes, scopes, ovulation, cultures, virus worries, if I was Zenyatta I would swat that nuisance Capone so hard with my tail and knock him out!!!! All this still could have been done in California without a loss of family.  I keep perusing Bloodhorse looking for an article that says "Zenyatta wisked out of Kentucky, Back in CA."  Maybe it is just me.  At least she has a best buddy in Pirate Queen.  She is still dancing, probably always will since it is in her pedigree. Well if mares are happiest in this life they can have it, it sounds so boring after all the fanfare and excitement that surrounded her.  I wish she would have one foal and be an ambassador for the sport for awhile after that and come back to the sunshine.  But that's just me, something is still sad about it all to me.  At least, thank God, she got HOY (HOC & MOM are a given) and my Lucky did get 3yr. Old Champ so my bday wishes and Steve's article came true, well almost all of them............

19 Jan 2011 8:35 PM
Carl

"Secretariat Vox Populi Award or "Voice of the People'' will be given to Zenyatta!"

What a gracious lady (Penny C.). This award seems to have been created as a direct response to some in the industry displaying a marked bias against the great Zenyatta. How fitting. Can we request that JShandler hold the trophy for Penney Chenery as she presents it to the Zenyatta connections? Just awesome. It took a class act like Ms. Chenery to give voice to the people and their love of this great animal.

19 Jan 2011 8:54 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Lise from Maine:

Bonjour.  Comment ca va?  J'ai achete un meuble, un commode Louis XV en bleu celeste ou le couleur de soie de Zenyatta. C'est un des coleurs de ma maison.  Alors, ja vais mettrais un photo de Zenyatta avec Mike dans le soie bleu celeste sur ce table.  Magnifique, n'est-ce pas?

To All:

What I said was I do a lot of French interior design and one of my colors I have worked with for years in my home is the blue celeste or turquoise blue.  I just did a lacquered Louis XV bombe chest in this color and I want to purchase a photo of Zenyatta with Mike up in the silks of the same color, magnificent on top of that chest! My own little shrine to our Queen, HOY!!!!!

19 Jan 2011 9:01 PM
Paula Higgins

Rachel, I join you in wishing Jess Jackson good health. I am very sorry he is having health issues.

These pictures really make me smile. Pirate Queen (I just love that name) is a hoot too.

19 Jan 2011 10:03 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Steve,

This is from the Derby ProMo blog but I wrote a funny story connecting 31 names of the new 3 yr. olds and I just reread the blog and it did not make it on.  Was it too long or maybe you did not receive it? It was about 2 little boys, The Boys At Tosconova, who venture onto the Kentucky Derby Trail and meet up with Sheriff Cogburn of the Wine Police and are assisted by his deputy Awesome Patriot and meet up with a chicken and Sweet Ducky thief called Rustler Hustler and a man,  very Mucho Macho Man named Jaycito and his burrow Santiva, and on and on until I got 31 names in there.  They were all Rocking Out at the Wilcox Inn and met up with a beautiful horse called Black N Beauty who was crying and who had lost his way to Uncle Mo's castle, and on and on and on until I fit 31 names in there.  I could not get the whole 60 or so names in.  But writing the story helped me remember a lot of the initial Derby contender names to date.

19 Jan 2011 10:47 PM
Dona

Rachel,

That may be well and good but this is about horses and what has

JJ done for the welfare of the horse industry? Zenyatta and the Mosses have been awesome in creating funds for the retired and unwanted horse. Their charity for others is as memorable as their conduct as Thoroughbred Owners and they set the standard for everyone to follow. JJ owes this industry a great deal, let's hear what he has done for the retired and homeless horse and I hope the way he's handled Rachel is no indication of his true character but I'mn not holding my breath. You Rachel fans went on and on about what a sports fan he was, let us know what he's done. Sorry, going off on such

a great page about Zenyatta, but some things just ring my bell and when it does, badda bing!

LauraJ, Have you read Tracking Barbaro's Brothers blog lately? We Barbaro fans were told about a poor starving horse in Tuscan that was rescued by the Heart of Tuscan facility and how they had discovered he was in fact a son of the Great sire Dynaformer. Heart desperately needed funds to help save this poor race horse named Dyna King. Thankfully, the blog group has responded with donations, myself included and even though he was in dire shape, he now has a chance. We jumped at the call to help for several reasons; Dyna King is related to Barbaro: this was a plea from someone we admire, our blog monitor Greg: Dyna King was crippled and starving, next we love animals and don't want any one of them to suffer especially one that had given so much at the race track and finally, we honor Barbaro's memory. I, for one,look forward to doing something for the disadvantaged and abused horse in Zenyatta's name. Even if it's just helping to muck out stalls occasionally, anything we can do as good-will ambassadors

for Zenyatta will earn us a special place in the Zenyatta chorus line!

19 Jan 2011 11:45 PM
Anita

Thanks so much for sharing your experience.  It's so comforting to hear more about her new life and get more perspective on the life of a broodmare.  She's so special -- it means a lot to hear about her until we can visit again.  Thanks for explaining the piece about her needing to have the space and get in foal before a visiting plan is worked out.  it makes sense.  

20 Jan 2011 1:14 AM
MD Reynolds

Steve, thanks so very much for the article & photos. I chuckle just thinking of Zenyatta & "her friends" hanging out in the paddock. They look like quite the little Ladies Social Circle! I'm so thankful to Zenyatta & her human connections for all they've done & continue to do for horse racing!

Laura J: I loved your comments & suggestions, of which I'm going to follow.

There are some very good people who are horse racing fans & members of the industry. There is no excuse for the lapse in care that too many of our ex-racers get. We all need to do our part whether it be through monetary donations or physical care. We can do better! Our thoroughbreds deserve it!

20 Jan 2011 9:54 AM
Lynne

Thank you so very much, Mr. Haskin for sharing your visit with Zenyatta with all her fans. The pictures you took are fantastic.

20 Jan 2011 10:07 AM
Susan

I really enjoyed your article. It made me feel as if I were there with you. It also gives the reader insight into how much goes into Breeding. What a Mare. Thank You

20 Jan 2011 10:14 AM
Zookeeper

What a pleasure it's been to read your article, Mr. Haskin and all the loving comments following it.

The details you provide is what we're looking for and the photos were fantastic. Thank you!!!

Zenyatta looks fabulous and happy. As a devoted fan, I cannot wish for more or better. Her being crowned Horse of the Year was icing on the cake (or rum on the fruitcake). I'll be forever grateful to have seen her race and to have basked in her awesome presence.

Unforgettable, utterly lovable Zenyatta!!! The words of Priscilla Clark, read by Jerry Moss at the Awards, say it all:

"If you love Thoroughbred horses you go through life hoping that you can see just one more in whose presence the clouds fall away to reveal the mountaintop."

And then, your own words, Mr. Haskin:

"When she did exit the stage, she left behind a spotlight that although empty will forever glow with the memory of her triumphs, not only on the racetrack, but in the hearts of all those she touched so deeply."

Again, my cup runneth over...be still my heart!!!  

20 Jan 2011 11:11 AM
Virginia

I love Zenyatta!! I am looking at her right now.  I bought the Breyer model of her.  She sits on top of my printer.  What a beauty.  Thank you for the pictures.  I was at the first running of Barbaro.   Zenyatta has won my heart too. I can't wait for Zenyatta's foal to be born.  I will pray for that to happen.

20 Jan 2011 11:49 AM
WWSTP

I am filled with such happiness just reading these comments...all without negativity...all filled with pure joy for Zenyatta and news of Zenyatta.  This truly reflects the BEST of what Z brought to us and this industry.  FINALLY a blog where I have read and totally enjoyed every entry.  Thanks Zenyatta!!  Steve I'm sure you've filtered a lot out, and THANKS for doing that.  What a joy to just bask in this resounding chorus of happiness for Zenyatta and her team!

20 Jan 2011 12:05 PM
Zookeeper

WWSTP - Amen!!!

20 Jan 2011 1:04 PM
trackgirl

It marvels me how well these horses are taken care of. I bought two off the track and give them all I can everyday. I no longer take vacations because I have "babies" to care for! I wish more track horses got to experience life like these do. Maybe someday....

Thank you for sharing the photos and life at the farm for Zenyatta and others. Please more!!!

20 Jan 2011 1:23 PM
Smarie

Kudos, Mr. Haskin, for another wonderful article about Zenyatta, the 2010 Horse Of The Year! I loved seeing the photos of Queen Z and her new friend too. Lane's End appears to be doing everything right in regards to Zenyatta and Charles Campbell seems to be kind and compassionate and knowledgeable. I just read where Penny Chenery, Secretariat's owner, is establishing a Secretariat Vox Populi ("Voice of the People,") Award and that Zenyatta will be it's first recipient. Ms. Chenery was as kind and open to the fans as the Mosses and the rest of Team Zenyatta was and still are. Lets hope that more and more owners remember us little people who come to watch their horses run and decide to share all aspects of their horses lives with the rest of us as Team Secretariat and Team Zenyatta have done. Thank you so much for this blog. I eagerly scan all horse racing sites every day for news of Zenyatta and Mr. Haskin, you have done far and away the best job in keeping us updated on our beloved Queen Z. God bless you! And I am so happy to know that Zenyatta is settling in well and enjoying being a retiree.

20 Jan 2011 1:24 PM
SR Vegas

Mr Haskin

...as I write this, there is already 336 posts here.

What can I say that hasn't already been said? Nothing, really.

So, Thank You for continuing some really brilliant pieces here. Zenyatta (or other subjects) you are truly an enjoyable read.

Continued success this year.

20 Jan 2011 1:30 PM
Meadowsneighbor

Steve,

  You have done it again. You are one of the best things about horse racing. So who's her first boyfriend(next article) Thanks for a little sunshine on a winter's day.

20 Jan 2011 1:39 PM
Soldier Course

NancyP:

Thanks. I'm also anxious to hear the verdict about War Pass's death.

20 Jan 2011 1:49 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Alex'sBigFan

   I hope you wrote that story down. Maybe try submitting it again? It sounds really good. How about Elite Alex's last race !!!!!

20 Jan 2011 1:51 PM
dancinghorse

I only had 3 wishes for my birthday on Jan.17th...one:that it would not snow, two: the day would be warm, AND my BIGGEST wish was for Queen Z to get HOY!!! I wanted her to have it last year and she should have!!I was afraid to open my email and hear that some one else had gotten it. BUT AS IT TURNS OUT...ALL MY b-day wishes came true!!!I was feelin' under the weather, so to speak and this has brought zing to my step and lightness to my heart and mind!! For EVERYTHING Zenyatta has done for the sport, for her fans and for her charities...let us bless her and hope her care-givers never forget...she's MORE than just a horse!!! But I am so happy that she is adjusting well and having fun.  SHe's worked her butt off for most of her life.   She deserves a little down time...(smile)   It was a great begining to a new year!!  All here in this house love the Queen.may your days be full of love and sunshine!! Blessed be...

20 Jan 2011 2:30 PM
LauraJ

@Zookeeper Jan 20 11:11--

It was CARROT cake!

20 Jan 2011 2:40 PM
LauraJ

Dona, yes I read about DynaKing, and I sent them a donation. Very sad. It looks as though there is hope for his future, however. He has such a will to live.

20 Jan 2011 2:43 PM
Soldier Course

The video of Marylou Whitney's acceptance speech is now up on YouTube.

Link:

http://tinyurl.com/4cav9yt

20 Jan 2011 2:44 PM
Barbara W

Nancy P and Soldier Course--

I've not heard anything beyond "inconclusive" on War Pass.

Also, nothing more on Life at Ten's incident at the Breeders' Cup?

20 Jan 2011 3:06 PM
Amanda

Thank you so much. It's wonderful to see her just being a horse. I saw some more pictures you took on Facebook, looks like she's been knicked a couple of times. I hate that but I guess that is expected since she is "free" now. I can't wait to find out who they have choose to be her first baby's daddy.

20 Jan 2011 3:12 PM
Zookeeper

LauraJ - That sounds even better!!!

20 Jan 2011 3:30 PM
Linda in Texas

Thank you Soldier Course for posting that link.

Mrs. Whitney-Hendrickson is truly the epitome of the word gracious.

And her heart is so in the right place for her love of the horses not only as they race but when their racing days are over.

Those of us against slaughter truly have a powerful person and voice on our side.

Nothing else need be said.

It is up to all of us to heed her words and never allow our critics too shout us down.

Her award is more than earned it is well deserved.

Her love of all the things i admire is refreshing: Dog Sledding, The Environment, Curing Cancer, Knowledge and of course Thoroughbred Horses and Rescue Foundations and so much more.

Thank you Mrs. Whitney-Hendrickson,

you are truly a beautiful, kind, thoughtful, unselfish and very special lady.

20 Jan 2011 5:01 PM
JB

Beautifully written...Zenyatta style !  Thanks for sharing your visit with "The Queen"

20 Jan 2011 6:03 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Dancinghorse,

Happy belated Birthday wishes.  Glad all your wishes came true too

and the HOY made your day.

Slew,

Belated Birthday wishes to your son too.  Hope the ankle is ok, sorry to hear that.

Dr. D.,

Yes, Elite Alex shaping up like his Papa!  Seems like he's got the heart.  Don't know if I would call my story good, more like a kid's fable but good to remember all those names.  If I have time later I can resubmit it.  Did the Derby ProMo blog end?

20 Jan 2011 6:42 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Dr. D.,

Ok I found the Derby ProMo blog and put the story with all the 30 some names of the 3 year olds in it again.  Check that blog since this one is really for our Queen.

20 Jan 2011 7:41 PM
Jean in Chicago

There've been a lot of great racehorses over the years, but not many of them get to be known by even the non-horse public.  Horses such as Man O'War, Seabiscuit, Exterminator, Secretariat, Barbaro and now Zenyatta don't get to be loved just because they won, but by how they ran, always with heart and courage.  Every time we saw Zenyatta come ambling out of the gate, so far behind that there just couldn't possibly be any way she could make up that much ground, she'd just go and do it. When you add her personality to the picture, no wonder we love her.

I suppose she'll be bred to AP Indy, but I'd love to see her sent to Giant's Causeway.  They could at least share a pint or two of Guinness.  And who knows, maybe someday a meeting with Sea the Stars?  After all, her daddy was Irish.

Steve,

 Any word on Thorn Song?  I know he was treated with stem cells and things sounded good, but that was almost a year ago.  And having an insurance company as his owner doesn't exactly fill me with hope that there is somebody out there really concerned about whats best for him.    

20 Jan 2011 8:56 PM
moodygirl

I apppreciate the details I have not seen elsewhere and hearing about Charles Campbell; we've all been wondering about him.

Steve, can you answer the question on Zenyatta's diet?? Some seem not to believe her diet was hay & oats. I remember seeing J.S. answering that question and he said hay & oats and I think something else, maybe a little oil (no clear memory on that).

For those that have not seen the video of Zenyatta that The Blood Horse did as a Christmas present, DON'T MISS IT! It was Zenyatta's first time frolicking in her paddock and the first time Team Zenyatta visited her since she moved to the farm. It's marvelous. She kicks up her heals and runs with her tail up in the air like an Arabian. She looks very happy. And again you can see all the precautions they are taking for her safety.

20 Jan 2011 9:15 PM
Helena

Thanks very much for the update on Queen Z.  It was very informative, as well as reassuring!  

20 Jan 2011 10:20 PM
Stephanie

She looks so content, thank you Steve, yet again you have brought us right there with your excellent writing and photos :)

20 Jan 2011 11:10 PM
Linda Craig

Hi Steve,

This was a delightful article, so enjoyable & so well written.  Thank you so much!

20 Jan 2011 11:11 PM
LauraS

Steve,

Another winner.  You really do need to put together a book of all your Zenyatta columns.  It would be a big best seller - with maybe a portion going to horse rescue? Just a hint...

I was driving to a rehearsal on Monday night and couldn't follow the awards "live".  Luckily, my local radio station said in an aside at the end of their sports report: "And just in from Florida - Zenyatta has been named Horse of the Year".  That was all. And I screamed "Yesssss!" so loudly that I'm sure the people in the next car thought I was crazy.  I've followed racing for 40+ years and I can truly say that Zenyatta is right up there on the list of all-time great horses. And now she's finally Horse of the Year.  And it wouldn't surprise me that, given how extraordinary she's proven to be in everything else, Zenyatta will be an extraordinary producer as a broodmare as well. I can hardly wait for her foals to reach the track.

"Zenyatta: 2010 Horse of the Year. Horse of the Decade.  Horse of a Lifetime."

21 Jan 2011 12:49 AM
Pat

That's why I love reading this blog. Zenyatta was about LOVE. Anytime I ever feel down and start to lose hope at something, I just go to a comment section filled with Zenyatta fans and just smile. Zenyatta brings the best out of people. It brings out the poets and romanticists. She brings people together. No discrimination. Just love, man. Because love can be the greatest thing we can give to one another in this brief life we all have. I know, I sound like a hippie there. Anytime you are feeling sad and lonely, just go to any comment section for Z and read or reminisce about her. She will be your sunshine. I know she was for me. I love her unconditionally more than many of my previous girlfriends! She never left me down and she always try to bring a smile to everybody's faces. She succeeded each time.  

21 Jan 2011 2:23 AM
Steve Haskin

As always, thank you for all your comments. I appreciate the feedback and the support. We should know the name of the lucky stallion any day now.

21 Jan 2011 10:08 AM
Sue M

I followed Zenyatta online for a a couple years until I saw her win the Breeders Cup in 2009. Since that day I:

1) subscribed to Blood Horse (after lurking for a few years)

2) spent hard-earned $ on a trip with my husband to the Breeders Cup to see her run

3) we're planning a second trip to the BC again this year

4) am planning on contributing $ to several charities that take care of the people that take care of the horses as well as horse rescues

5) in addition I've decided that when I finally get my first horse it will be a retired TB or I'll have one as a paddock/companion horse

6) I've met and spent many wonderful moments with fellow horse lovers online (and in person)

All because of Zenyatta :)

21 Jan 2011 10:56 AM
Carol Christine

Thank you Steve for another wonderful article about Zenyatta! So  happy that she has friends and is led from the pasture with her best friend. "The Queen" with her lady-in- waiting, Pirate Queen!

21 Jan 2011 11:27 AM
Linda in Texas

Pat,your post was so honest and so many of us can identify with you no doubt, especially when you say she is your "Sunshine." Nice.

Prior to reading your post,

I was thinking about all of the posts on Steve's blogs and about all the love filled comments people have made. i was wondering, does love really come from the heart or does love come from the brain? It is close to Valentine's Day i guess is what triggered this.

I have just about surmised that love really does not come from the heart, it begins when the brain tells the heart to beat a little faster, we are going into overdrive

as Zenyatta is in the building (our body, mind and spirit).

Since Zenyatta is all of those things wrapped up into one huge beautiful package, we all have been smitten.

And  just now Steve posts "we should know the name of the lucky stallion any day now." To use Zookeeper's words, i hope she does not mind, "Be still my heart." For Sure!

Get the pedigrees ready ya'll for further study of just exactly what and which "their" foal might be born to resemble.

Another chapter waiting in Steve's Delivery Room!

Thanks Steve. You are something else. You are my grandfather with his knowledge, my dad with his love and my brother with his humor all wrapped up into one great Professor of Postulation!

P.S. I am ordering a Tag for Pirate Queen to have placed  on her halter if Lane's End will allow it so she can be like her best mare friend Zenyatta. I found one in a catalog that came just yesterday.

Watch the races at Gulf Stream today there could be some surprises and KD hopefuls!

I am liking Beamer, Cool Blue Red Hot and whichever one is preferred the least in no special order! Many are thinking Dialed In has it wrapped up.

Safe journeys all. And Rest in Peace Miesque without you their would not have been Kingmambo another favorite.

21 Jan 2011 12:44 PM
Lise from Maine

Hi!

Because of Zenyatta I have ordered the 8 trial issues of Bloodhorse.

I haven't received any as yet but I did call (got the number on online which was very convenient) Bloodhorse yesterday to find out when they would arrive and to check if Bloodhorse had actually received my order.

They did.

I hope that I receive some issues with some stories of Zenyatta.

If I remember correctly, I discovered Bloodhorse after Barbaro won the 2006 Kentucky Derby, and I have been a fan of horse racing ever since.

A friend of mine took me to Scarborough Downs near Portland, Maine and watched Barbaro win the derby, and I have been "hooked" on horse racing ever since then.

Thank you!

21 Jan 2011 1:00 PM
Lise from Maine

Bonjour Alex's Big Fan,

Sounds like you are quite an artist.

Suggestion: Order the photo from Bloodhorse that comes with a booklet of Zenyatta's life. It is less than $10.00.

I have that photo and had it framed in a Victorian gold frame with two different colored mattings, and Zenyatta looks gorgeous in it.

Thank you!

21 Jan 2011 1:14 PM
Steve Haskin

Wow, Linda, that may be as nice a compliment as I've ever received. Thank you very much.

Sue M., that is a wonderful post. Thank you for sharing.

21 Jan 2011 1:27 PM
Penny in TX

Linda in TX, just curious, what does the round tag say and does it represent anything?  That is such a sweet thing to do for Pirate Queen.

21 Jan 2011 4:33 PM
steve from st louis

Is it too simplistic to breed her to Blame? The Roberto line is a great one and I don't remember  Kris S. as a robust stud. Shame Northern Dancer's not around. That little guy would have been perfect.

21 Jan 2011 5:36 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Linda in Texas,

Love your posts, great.  A tag for Pirate Queen, how cute and thoughtful!  I love it.

Some Pirate Queen info:

I looked at the photo again of Queen Z and Pirate Queen, too cute. Pirate Queen looks in awe of Zenyatta and her beauty!  I did some googling and found a YouTube video of 2 of Pirate Queens races at Churchill, Nov. 2009.  Google in YouTube Pirate Queen and it comes up.  One race Pirate Queen was 6th.  Her pedigree is Sire:

Unbridled's Song and Dam: Be Gentle.  She was foaled in 2007.

There were 7 thoroughbreds named Pirate Queen since 1865 from GB and Canada, with this Pirate Queen I think being the only USA one.

Hope Zenyatta teaches her to do that "California two step" in their Lane's End paddock!

Slew,

C'mon, when they announce the lucky suitor do a dialogue between Zenyatta and Pirate Queen!

Lise in Maine,

Thanks I will look into ordering that photo with a gold frame too.

21 Jan 2011 7:04 PM
Racingfan

Moodygirl, On 60 Minutes John said he gave her a little aloe vera juice I believe, as well as her occasional beer.

21 Jan 2011 8:43 PM
Linda in Texas

Penny in TX, the tag is called simply a Bridle Tag, they are about an inch in diameter or so and i ordered Pirate Queen's in Shiney Brass and of course it will have her name engraved on it.

If you will look at Zenyatta's video, you will see a smallish oval or round tag hanging just above her name plate on her bridle.

You will recognize it as being one.

I ordered it from USBRASS in Pennsylvania but there are all kinds and am having them send it to Lane's End. They are terribly reasonable, my goodness. I would like to donate a new bridle for her also, her's is looking well used.

Pirate Queen needs to know she is a very special gal friend and that she has an important mission in her life to look forward to and i think she needs to look spiffy and have a little bling like Zenyatta.

Watched the races today, still am,

Soldat came in first at Gulf Stream in Race 9, Cool Blue Red Hot Second, and Beamer Third! So i picked 2 that placed, for a beginner that is fun. Dialed In scratched, he was the one most thought would win.

I in no way work for Bloodhorse.com, but the Zenyatta Commemorative issue is so worth the little they are asking, and the latest has the HOY offering included with the 8 x 10 Photo Lise in Maine is talking about. I had my photo framed in a brown mahogany looking one almost exactly the same color as Zenyatta, and it also is matted with 2 colors. It is exquisite, just like she is.

The photo was taken really up close. I highly recommend it. It will be a treasure to pass down.

You know Pirate Queen reminds me of me, not really with it, a little out of step, tried but true, a little gray, a very faithful friend and always aiming to please.

And Steve, you are everyone's idol. Just read the posts, even the guys appreciate you!!

And you are so welcome, i know i speak for many.

Have a great week end, more horse racing on Saturday then the Football games, I say GO JETS !!! Do you all know how hard that was to say coming from a died in the wool Cowboy Fan.

Last time i cheered for The Jets was when Joe Namath Quarterbacked their Super Bowl Team eons ago. I know right where i was, staying with my dads Champion Lab mama that had 13 puppies and helping her to switch pups so everyone had a spicket!

21 Jan 2011 9:17 PM
Linda in Texas

Thank you so much Alex'sBigFan for the Pirate Queen information. She is a filly herself foaled in 2007. I will go straight there after i say thank you again. And- - -

Of course Sire: Unbridled's Song goes with no explanation, love love admire him and the Dam: Be Gentle, how apropos. Then she for sure needs a Bridle Tag!!

21 Jan 2011 9:37 PM
Pedigree Shelly

       Great pictures of Zenyatta ! Have The Mosses made any breeding plans yet for her ? It's obviously the best choice to go to AP Indy ! He's right there at Lane's End !!!!

21 Jan 2011 9:50 PM
Woodswoman

Steve, thank you for bringing your experience alive for Zenyatta's many fans. Your writing always paints an evocative portrait, and I feel grateful to be able to read it.

22 Jan 2011 12:21 AM
Matthew W

Miesque, age 27, gone--I consider Miesque to have been superior to Goldikova, indeed, one of the ones, so to speak--Miesque's kick was one of the all time greatest milers kicks! Perhaps hers was the best, I'm a Lure guy, when it comes to milers--Miesque in the last 1/8, Lure from flagfall to finish, Goldikova, Spinning World--these are the great ones--Miesque, age 27--truly one of the great ones, of all time--Miesque!

22 Jan 2011 1:20 AM
Pat

Thanks, Linda.

I don't know if love comes from the heart or brain. All I know and ever want to know is that it makes me happy just like Zenyatta! =) Who knows what this afterlife brings when we are gone from this world? If I ever arrive at Heaven's gate and leave this world like the prophet Elijah, I can only hope one of the horses pulling my chariot is Zenyatta. I hope you can meet me there someday, sweetheart. She was the one who strengthened my faith when I was down. When I see Zenyatta again in another lifetime, I know I will be with in Heaven. With her running-style, she only belongs from out of the clouds.

22 Jan 2011 1:43 AM
El Kabong

Linda in Texas

I was waiting for that race at GP as well and what a race it was.........For Soldat. I was curious to see how CBRH would run, but man, did we see an athlete today. Very impressive effort.

22 Jan 2011 7:42 AM
Will W

An interesting article on how a mare is adjusted to life on a horse farm and prepared for breeding, but it's really a nostalgic, I can't let her go into off-track obscurity piece by a veteran turf writer, who just like the racing public, can't bear to part with this greatest of race mares. Steve wears his heart on his sleeve in this article on Zenyatta and one can easily detect in this and his other post track articles on the race mare the longing of the racing public to see more of Queen Z on the track. The obscurity of horse farm retirement is just too much to bear. Yet, that's Zenyatta's inevitable fate as it is for every great race mare. There's the overwhelming sense though, as reflected in Steve's articles, that this retirement was premature and is not being accepted with the quiet resignation that accompanies a sense of a racing career that has reached its climax and completion. This horse was retired at the top of her game when she was better than ever, coming into a rare zone of accomplishment other horses never enter. You don't retire a Queen in the midst of her coronation. Everyone knows that leaving the track for the breeding stall means an ever deepening descent into obscurity, and this race mare has so caught the hearts of the racing public, including veteran turf writers like Steve Haskin, that the pain of parting is just too much. When before have we ever seen such post track articles by turf writers about a retired thoroughbred race horse's adjustment to horse farm life ? Never seen a piece like this on Curlin who was prematurely retired, and Rachel Alexandra has been allowed to go off into horse farm obscurity by Steve and other writers with barely a mention. Not so Zenyatta and the refusal of writers like Steve Haskin to let her fade away from the eye of the racing public is something that Jerry Moss should take note of for Steve's piece reflects how the racing public yearns for more of this great race mare on the track. She should not have been retired for she belongs not physically but spiritually to her fans and not Moss. Damn Capitalism and private property rights. This horse belongs to the Racing Commons and should have been kept on the track to thrill, inspire, and unite the racing public like only Zenyatta can do. She's been a much needed healing balm to the spirit of racing which has been jaded and jaundiced by greed-driven business practice to prematurely retire its champions for the sake of the almighty dollar. They have rendered the Sport of Kings into just another soulless business, just another exercise in empty materialism. The career of Zenyatta was a healthy corrective to all that racing has sadly become until she too was sent all too soon to the horse farm and the breeding stall. As she leaves, the heart sinks, the spirit is sapped, nostalgia sets in and runs its inevitable course, and the soullessness returns to what has become an industry and no longer a sport - a Sport of Kings. All the racing public has left to remember the great Queen of race mares is Steve's whimsical ventures into nostalgia penned for Bloodhorse. And, when they end, we'll hear little more of the Queen. How sad !

22 Jan 2011 8:52 AM
Anna

Too bad she didn't go to Three Chimneys. Their farm has always been much more accessible to fans and they did a great job with Smarty Jones and fans.

Steve, understand the Zenyatta love fest but would really love to see an in-depth article on Goldikova from a fan point of view. She was the main reason I went to the Breeders Cup this year. I get that she races mostly in Europe but before people crown Zenyatta the greatest race mare ever, they really need to look at Dahlia, Goldikova, Ouija Board (saw her 2 BC wins) and several other great mares that not only had long win streaks or many wins but raced at many tracks, on many surfaces, on more than one continent even and often ran the best in the world not just in the US and against boys. Bit of a disservice to these many great mares to dismiss so easily what they have done.

22 Jan 2011 9:22 AM
Anna

dogcathorse, Jess Jackson brought back 2 HOYs to race another year FOR THE FANS. Most owners these days retire a winning horse after just one year that didn't win HOY (Lookin At Lucky, etc.) Jackson brought back Curlin and Rachel. Brought us a lot of great racing. If Rachel has fallen off the radar it is because the media has not followed her like they have Zenyatta.

Mr. Jackson should be thanked for what he has done for racing and given more credit than he currently gets.

22 Jan 2011 9:30 AM
Sue M

@anna, I agree that there have been other great mares (Zarkava in Europe?? another good one, undefeated, too). The thing with Zenyatta is that she loves the attention and people and the love is mutual, she has an aura of greatness when you're near her or see her. Not all champion race horses have that (and many owners/trainers don't allow the access). So many people witnessed Z's run in person - and now we have the internet, so you can see any races that you missed, as well as her day at the barn, visiting with fans, etc. There is lots of reading to be done, too, if you want to learn about Ruffian, Winning Colors, Genuine Risk, Lady's Secret, Gallorette, etc. Hopefully people's love for Zenyatta will peak their curiosity and they will want to find out about other great horses.

22 Jan 2011 12:22 PM
Linda in Texas

Will W with all due respect, Zenyatta is 6 plus years old. Had she continued to race with her reputation for wins and broken down or had an accident on a track, the Mosses would have been given hell.

Zenyatta did what she was asked to do and she loved every minute of it. And thank the racing Gods she retired sound, twice.

She did not travel well and had

won everything within proximity of her stable and though she did go to Oaklawn and of course to the east coast to race,

she had proven her ability over and over. She is a large mare, her stable was not in a rolling pasture, it was almost an asphalt facility with a little green grass to graze on. During news reports and videos you could hear the jet engines of huge airplanes departing and arriving at the airport.

The Mosses do not have a farm near their business. That was explained many times before. Zenyatta was born in Kentucky. She is in her home state. She is being treated like all the other horses but i am sure with an exclamation sign in the minds of everyone who cares for her.

The folks at Lane's End know they

have a rock star boarder in Zenyatta. They have her best interests at their front and center. She is loving her freedom.

Articles i have read state that the later in life a mare has a foal, the harder it is for them.

I don't look for the Mosses to mass produce foals from Zenyatta, they simply would like her to have one now, while she is old enough but not too old.

Will W

To put the entire industry on The Mosses shoulders is not fair.

To mention that Steve has not written about Rachel Alexandra is unfair also. To answer your's and other's inquiries as to 'where is Rachel and why is no one writing about her and why has everyone forgotten her' let me respond.

I am not an authority but on one of Steve's blogs he wrote that he

attempted to contact the handlers and managers of Rachel Alexandra by telephone and to put it politely, was ignored, rebuffed and

rejected, rudely i might add.

Obviously her owners and managers did not want Rachel Alexandra to be able to bask in the sunlight she provided for her fans. That was not Steve's decision. It was theirs. I don't read that you feel Rachel's retirement was too premature. I wonder why? She is 2 or 3 years younger than Zenyatta.

But you wanted Zenyatta to keep on living in Barn 55 ad infinitum.

Rachel was ushered to her retirement almost under a cloak of suspicion as to why, what and whatever. We fans were asking questions because we were genuinely concerned about her. No one connected to Rachel responded.

The Jackson's did it their way.

Same for Curlin. No one has written about him for the same reason. Those horses belong to The Jackson's and they will do as they please, thankyou, don't ask about Rachel or Curlin, they are not our business. Except for 1 statement i read when Mrs. Banke-Jackson was asked about how is Rachel Alexandra, her response was she is happy or fine and at their farm in Kentucky. That was it.

Did you just want the Mosses to run the hell out of Zenyatta so that she would break down??? Of course not, but there was nothing more Zenyatta could do. 3 years of racing was more than her quota.

Maybe not compared to Lava Man, but any owner and we fans do look forward to a foal or two.

And Anna - what has Mr. Jackson done for racing? And the poster who said he had donated to children's charities. What does that have to do with hiding Rachel Alexandra in Louisiana for 6 months, not allowing the media to

see her so they could write about her. There was just something secretive in her being sequestered

then her 'comeback' which fizzled as she was never the same. Her heart and guts were wrenched for too aggressive a schedule the previous year has been the common reason. But we will never know for sure.

No one wishes ill for any one when it comes to their health.

Comments from people who

make mention of Mr. Jackson's health as being the reason for the secretive actions on Rachel's behalf are not sincere as there must be something more about Rachel.

Regarding Mr. Jackson's health as mentioned here, allow me to say, having lost 3 male immediate family members in the last year and a half, i sincerely say from my heart and pray that Mr. Jackson recovers totally from his own personal health issues.

With that said, it is aloofness and arrogance that breeds contempt especially from a family that reaped huge benefits from Curlin and Rachel Alexandra.

Those benefits came from the admiration and love their fans had for them. Who, i might add, in the end were put in their places with no explanation.

Anna - with all due respect again, your sentence and i quote: "If Rachel has fallen off the radar it is because the media has not followed her like they have Zenyatta." Begs disagreement. Zenyatta was racing before Rachel was and she was racing after Rachel Alexandra was. Her owners were savvy in allowing her adoring fans to do just that. Not so for Rachel Alexandra's, much as we all were begging. No crumbs were thrown to us nor the media.

No one is crowning Zenyatta the Greatest Race Mare ever. That will be the job of people who will be around long after all of us posting on this blog are dust.

But i must say in my 70 years, she is the best all around mare i have ever followed.

And the greatest blessing is that she is still here and sound. Her life was not lost in a grudge race as Ruffian, may she rest in peace, she was the first heartbreak for me.

And for Rachel Alexandra to have raced as she did boggles the mind of fans who adored her. I miss her but i will not feel guilty for the attention given to Zenyatta, at least her adoration is accepted by her owners and everyone connected to her.

Lane's End was the choice of the Mosses. A fine, multi- generational lovely rolling pastured farm in Kentucky Horse Country. Now is not the time for hundreds of people being around her as she prepares for 'motherhood.'

And with Goldikova being stabled in Europe, she is just not quite as accessible as horses running and stabled in the United States.

Sorry this is so long. But the jabs and innuendos have no place here and Steve has been a good sport to allow them after his futile attempts to write about Rachel Alexandra with an article on her.

I am not a contemptible minded person, but i can read. And i just thought perhaps that some making statements were not aware of previous attempts to write about Rachel Alexandra that were thwarted.

And Anna, your last statement that "Mr. Jackson should be thanked for what he has done for racing and given more credit than he currently gets" is almost prophetic. He must be a very private man who used a very public avenue for self fulfillment. Stated simply, he does not need anything from the very public that provided it.

Zenyatta did earn, deserve and receive Horse of The Year on her third nomination. But some still want to cloud her honor. I will stand up for everything about her.

I am so proud and happy for Zenyatta and those so close to her.

And all horses for that matter whether they succeed on the race tracks or not.

22 Jan 2011 12:32 PM
Will W

Linda in Texas: Yes, I felt RA's retirement was far too premature and was bummed about that. I was a Rachel fan and a Curlin fan before I came to truly appreciate Zenyatta's greatness. I don't sense though that Steve had the same level of interest in Rachel off the track as he does in Zenyatta though you may well be right that he received nothing but rebuff from her interests in trying to do further stories about RA off the track. As for "running the hell out of Zenyatta," I grew up in the era of the great handicap horses of the 60s and 70s when horses ran far more frequently and to a greater age than they do today. Nobody talked that way then before this present day when horses run on meds and are bred primarily for speed. The man you hold in little respect - Jess Jackson - had a lot to say about that. Zenyatta is a remarkably sound and consistent horse. There seems to be no bounce in her. If geldings can run till their ten, Zenyatta can run until she's eight. Goldikova, who competes primarily against colts, is doing just that. Her interests said they are doing this to a good extent because she is not a stallion who can breed right and left, again and again. (My dad had a claiming horse, a colt named Trico, that ran until he was twelve and retired soundly. Kenny Noe, Sr. trained him and Early Fires used to ride him). At her time of retirement Zenyatta was entering a rarified zone of achievement few, if any, horses ever enter. It was not her time. There was plenty left to do. Take her East, stable her there if travel proves her Achilles Heel, and let's see her in the same Grade 1s that Blame and Quality Road ran in this year against the colts. It couldn't be any worse than forcing her to run like hell to win paceless races as a closer over California synthetic surfaces. Then let her go out as a repeat BC Classic winner. No one then could doubt her greatness, claiming she was beating only lower level female competition and ducking the males - one of which, Blame, she could not quite run down. Give the Queen a chance to end her career w/o controversy as 2011 uncontested HOY. She's given no indication she couldn't hold up through another year's campaigning on the track.

22 Jan 2011 2:04 PM
PJJ

Bravo!! LindainTexas, I must say, Well written and beautufully said, I agree with you 1000%, We all do except for the naysayers who have constantly tried to fault Zenyatta and her connections.

As far as Jess Jackson is concerned, He never cared for her fans, if he did he wouldnt have treated them this way.

22 Jan 2011 2:13 PM
sherpa

Linda in TX, your 12:32 PM comment was awesome!  I so agree with every word.

As I was catching up on posts and saw a few people complaining that, in essence, Rachel Alexandra was being neglected, I too remembered Steve's comment a month or so ago that her connections had rebuffed him when he tried to get news of her - and in such a rude way that he wouldn't be trying again.  I was dumbfounded that ANYONE would pass up a chance to have Steve Haskin write about their horse.  

22 Jan 2011 3:34 PM
Barbara W

Thank you, Linda in Texas!

22 Jan 2011 3:38 PM
dddundalk

Will W:  you sound like you think Zenyatta has something to prove.  I think you'll find most Z fans believe she has already proven herself admirably.  I agree it would have been great to see her race again - but at what cost?  Every new race would be a greater chance of injury.  I feel she did all she needed to do.  Her joy when she was turned out at Lanes End the first time convinced me that the Mosses had made the right decision.  She has earned the right to be a horse again - and she is loving it.

22 Jan 2011 3:46 PM
CV

"If geldings can run till their ten, Zenyatta can run until she's eight. Goldikova, who competes primarily against colts, is doing just that."

Will W 22 Jan 2011 2:04 PM

No, Goldikova isn't "doing just that." She was 5 last year, and is 6 this year, the same age as Zenyatta was LAST YEAR.

You will not see Goldikova running until she is 8 years old. More than likely, she will be retired after her 6-year-old campaign, just as Z was.

22 Jan 2011 4:44 PM
txhorsefan

Linda in Texas - you did it again.  Thank you for your post today at 12:32.  Very well said.  I remember there were at least a couple of times that Steve mentioned trying to get information about Rachel Alexandra and being turned down flat with no hint of anything forthcoming from her connections.  I do hope that Mr. Jackson is not in poor health, but I will admit I have never been a fan of his.  It's all water under the bridge at this point, but at the time, I felt like he was running Curlin as a four year old because there would be such difficulty placing him as a stallion with all the problems his other part owners, the incarcerated attorneys. It was my opinion, and I read a few blogs mentioning those same thoughts, that there would be a tough time getting a farm and all those parties to come to terms.  It wasn't until Jackson was finally able to buy out the other interests in Curlin that he was able to send him to stud.  Of course, that is my opinion and I have no facts on which to base this, but it is clear that Mr. Jackson was not as generous with Rachel Alexandra as the Mosses were with Zenyatta.  There were many of us pleading for information on Rachel Alexandra for a long time after she was whisked away with no fanfare or farewell.

22 Jan 2011 6:40 PM
Jean in Chicago

Linda in Texas:  thank you again for saying a lot of the things I wish I was articulate enough to say.  You're a wonderful lady and I'm so sorry for your losses.  I remember (and cried) over your story of the big dining table getting emptier.  

I also love Unbridled Song and was thrilled to hear (from Jason Shanler's blog) that his son Thorn Song is doing OK after stem cell treatments for his laminitis. (Can't help it, I've been partial to grays since I was a kid and just thought Native Dancer was about perfect.  I've got an old book about the Derby that ends with Hill Gail winning in 1952 and somebody has penciled in Native Dancer as winner for 1953.  Maybe this jinxed him.)

I can even forgive you cheering for the Jets. I was a Namath fan, too.  Remember those panty hose ads?

I'd really like to see more coverage of some of the European horses.  Bringing over horses like Sir Gallahad III, Blenheim II, Nasrullah, (thank you, Hancocks) and Princequillo rejuvenated American bloodlines in the 1930s & 40s and have reveberated down through pedigrees.  And thank you Northern Dancer, you Canadian you. Zenyatta's daddy was Irish (maybe this is where she got her taste for Guinness). Obviously, I'm not a great fan of repeated in-breeding.  Besides, European owners seem interested in breeding for distance.  I don't remember hearing any talk of 'lets shorten the distance of classic races' from over there. Thoroughbreds came originally from Arabians, still the premier endurance breed in the world.  If you want to see blazing speed over very short distances, watch Quarter Horses.

Will W:  Yeah, part of me would like to see her still racing.  I remember one of the commmentators after the BC saying "no big deal, tell her she won, give her a few mints and start training for Dubai".  But every time a horse steps onto the track I worry.    Yes, yes, I know accidents can happen on the farm and even in a stall, but I really like the idea of her running around a paddock with other horses.

Wasn't Early Fires aptly named!  He could get a horse out of the gate faster than anybody.  I think he was psychic as to when the starter would push the button.

22 Jan 2011 7:10 PM
PJJ

Will W. ,   OK, if Zenyatta is suppose to run til she's eight, I would suggest someone call JJ and tell him to pull RA out of the breeding shed and put her back on the track. Wouldnt you?  because she sure to hell ought to still be running in your eyes......Get a life Will or whatever your imposter name is.

I also remember reading Steve's answer to someoene a couple of blogs back about trying to contact RA's connections and getting a very cold and gruff shoulder,  So what the hell is he supposed to do?   HE said he wouldnt bother with it again and I dont blame him,  Burn me once, shame on you, Burn me twice, shame on me...

IF JJ didnt give her fans the time of day upon her abrupt retirement then what makes you think he is going to give it to the reporters?  by the way, Jess didnt care about her fans per her retirement and he hasnt cared since her retirement either.

YEah,  I say the Mosses are a whole lot better judge of character for horse owners than MR. J.Jackson is or ever was....

22 Jan 2011 7:11 PM
LauraJ

For those concerned about Rachel, you can find updates on Stonestreet Farm's Facebook page. It is nowhere near as in-depth as Z's Facebook page, but there are some nice recent pictures. She seems to be healthy and happy. Hot Dixie Chick is her pasture buddy.

You can check up on Curlin on Lane's End's website, or visit him there (not during breeding season, though, unless you are a breeder).

22 Jan 2011 8:27 PM
Linda in Texas

Will W. in my opinion,

it makes no sense to race Zenyatta anymore. She will still have 1 loss connected to her record, no matter if she ran 50 more and won them all. Opinions would still be as they are today.  

Pepper's Pride in foal for the second time awaiting her first born live foal would benefit from coming back to race to make her record 20-0. But that is asking a lot now that she has been retired for at least a couple of years.

I know the old timers used to run til they couldn't. And your dad's claimer 'Trico', God Bless him along with Mr. Noe his trainer and Early Fires his jockey. I love any history involving horses. Thanks for telling us about them.

Claimers are another pet subject for me. Just watched 2 grays in Race 4 at Aqueduct earlier today. 'Tangled Sheets' the No. 1. Horse came in First Place and behind him back 1 horse was 'Forever a Friend' the No. 9 Horse came in Third. Forever a Friend is beautiful. They both ran like their saddles were on fire, and i respect them for it. It was so cold the jockeys were wearing ski masks, it looked bizarre.

Frankly, bless them all. Peace.

22 Jan 2011 8:47 PM
Paula Higgins

I think retiring Zenyatta now was the right thing to do. I am more than grateful for what Jerry and Ann Moss gave us. Seeing her running in the paddock and out with her friends, in short just being a horse, is simply wonderful. It makes me smile ear to ear. She has done enough and so have her connections. I think they are treating her very well at Lane's End. Her fans aren't going away and everyone knows that. Her story continues. I just hope Hollywood makes a movie about her LOL.

22 Jan 2011 10:58 PM
Matthew W

Linda with the good writing skills--so much the better when you write from the gut! I can "feel" them keys poundin' and I know it didn't take long! (to write that long post)...no, you're right, something not all that right about the Rachel Alexandra Story--the winners circle of the Woodward tells a story of it's own: Jess, both arms raised as if he has conquered the world--The filly, that grand filly, having been asked the question, this time vs older, her head down to the ground in exhaustion--no, those synthetic races were tough on Zenyatta--her race v St Trinnians was epic--St Trinnians is the best female horse in the land (if she dirts)--I mean, sheesh, that was some kinda animal! Give her her due! The least you could say is there was never anything like her, a FEMALE horse, who's favored in the CLASSIC--(twice)--there has NEVER been a female horse, with the exception of maybe Busher or Gallorette, who whold've been favored in a Classic--and Zenyatta's favored in two/one of them she was hammered down to even! If she doesn't steady behind Quality Road she wins by two--if she doesn't back away from the kickback like she was being distanced--Zenyatta goes away by six---she was a living legend and I'm glad she walks this Earth!

22 Jan 2011 10:59 PM
Sue M

I'm thrilled that Z has retired. I watched Ruffian's match race and it was sickening. Ever since then, I watch all races with excitement and also saying a small prayer in the back of my mind that everyone comes home safe. I also saw Barbaro's breakdown and Eight Belles. Then when I really fell for Zenyatta each race presented two challenges (in my mind), winning and coming home safe. She's 100% healthy and I think that's an awesome achievement, especially for such a big girl :) I cringe when I read about horses racing 7/8+ times a year. Just because they can, doesn't mean they should. And I don't think the breed is as strong as it was 25 yrs ago.  

22 Jan 2011 11:54 PM
Dani

Linda in Texas - your posts are really wonderful. I always look forward to them as they are so informative and straight to the point but with so much heart.

I'm glad that Stonestreet Farms has finally put up some photos of Rachel and released a smidgin' of news about her but I still haven't completely gotten over my 'unhappiness' with the way her retirement was handled. She deserved to go out celebrated and with the kind of fanfare Zenyatta had. Her fans deserved the chance to show her the admiration and love they had for her.  She was a tremendous horse with a big heart and she left for the farm in the loneliest fashion. There has to be something behind it all. But I probably just need to get over it and be glad for what little has finally come out and hope there will be more. I did love Barbara Livingston's  (DRF) photographic tribute to her - it brought back so many wonderful memories. Such a beautiful girl.

As for Zenyatta and her HOY honor, it does the heart good. She and all her connections from the Mosses to the Shirreffs and everyone at Barn 55, it's one of those feel good stories. And being able to watch Zen gallop around her paddock with her gal pals is just pure joy for me. I never get tired of those videos. We're so lucky to have Team Z acknowledge and honor us as fans by keeping a Diary and Facebook page for us to always know what she is up to now that she is retired. I'm just hoping the new fans she captured will not stop with her but will find other horses to latch on to - of course, it very likely will depend a lot on what the owners and trainers of those horses decide to do when it comes to media attention and access of some kind. There may never be another Zenyatta experience, but there are so many wonderful horses out there to entice the minds and hearts of new and old racing fans alike and it would be a true shame to let this moment, this special time pass. The racing industry has been given a blueprint. There is no excuse not to use it to keep and bring fans into the sport.

23 Jan 2011 12:13 AM
jayjay

Still waiting for Steve to post who the lucky one is.  I've been checking DRF googling it but haven't seen any news.  I'm hoping she gets Tiznow, I think it'll be a good match.

23 Jan 2011 1:50 AM
Cynthia

Great pictures and story Steve. Zenyatta looks so cute with her friend. I am so happy she got Horse of the Year.

23 Jan 2011 2:34 AM
christy tate

thanks Steve for the nice article and pictures of your visit with Zenyatta. glad to know that she's adjusting to life at the farm as well as she seems to be. found her fan page on Facebook,and love the diary posts. i think that for those of us who wont get to see her, it's a great way to stay updated. happy to hear that she's being looked out for by people at Lane's End, and agree that her health and safety come first. dont think that the farm is being un friendly to the fans by wanting to be carefulabout people visiting, it's always better to be safe than sorry.

23 Jan 2011 3:26 AM
Slew

If you go to Stonestreet Farms site, you will find photos of Rachel playing in the snow in the paddock with Hot Dixie Chick, also retired last year with no press.

23 Jan 2011 9:21 AM
l

Slew, thanks so much, i found the snow photos with Dixie Chick and Rachel Alexandra on Stonestreet's Facebook Page. Picture 5 of Rachel up very close with the Barn in the background is such a lovely treat on a sunshiny pretty day.

She is a beautiful mare. And more than anything, i am thankful that people have not forgotten her and that Stonestreet promises an Open House by appointment soon.

23 Jan 2011 11:00 AM
Linda in Texas

Thank you Slew, i found photos of Rachel Alexandra and Hot Dixie Chick on Stonestreet's Facebook page.

Very nice photo of Rachel up very close with the barn in the background taken on a clear sunshiny day. She is a beautiful mare and i am so thankful she has not been forgotten.

23 Jan 2011 11:04 AM
Sue M

Brethren and Uncle Mo already have fb pages, so some owners are paying attention. There are probably more, and I just haven't found them yet.

23 Jan 2011 11:30 AM
Paula Higgins

There are also some pictures of Rachel on Facebook in the paddock with a friend. Maybe they are starting to put some pictures and information out there now. She was an amazing horse and also one for the history books. I won't forget her. I think we all need to stop hammering Mr. Jackson. I am very grateful for Curlin and Rachel. He kept them both going for the fans. We need to appreciate everyone who contributes to this sport and he certainly has.

23 Jan 2011 11:55 AM
Sue M

Arrrrgh. I said "peak" when I meant "pique". I hate when that happens.

23 Jan 2011 12:08 PM
Mike Relva

WILL W

I agree with PJJ,and disagree with almost everything you stated. Steve reached out regarding RA,getting a rude reception Maybe RA could've finished her career on a high note,if her tank hadn't been emptied and gutted in the Woodward, Hal Wiggens stated in an interview months ago she was "gutted in the Woodward". I think he would know,and I posted a half dozen times before and after that race,it was too much. As for Zenyatta she has nothing to prove, the IMPORTANT ELEMENT is she retired SOUND. She's HOY and  although indications appear she could race,why let her? She's the greatest mare to set foot on a track,anywhere!

23 Jan 2011 12:39 PM
Mike Relva

ANNE

Should Jackson be thanked for RA run into the ground,gutted in the Woodward,and certainly not the same last yr. That's why she didn't finish the season,retired without fanfare and the zero fan day. Yeah,he's great!

23 Jan 2011 12:47 PM
jayjay

Linda in TX : Very well said.   I will stand right beside you or behind you for everything about her.  Some people just don't get it.  

Will W : I think you should try writing to Jess Jackson and his team and see if you can find any information about Rachel then let us know.  Just tell them you're a HUGE fan and you've been a HUGE fan for a long time.  I'm sure they'll appreciate that and give you the information.  Please do share it with us.  We're interested in finding out how Rachel is doing.

23 Jan 2011 1:28 PM
Linda in Texas

Jean in Chicago - i hope your Bears win. I think a Jets - Bears Super Bowl in Texas would be great. I love Chi Town as much as Saratoga Springs and NYC so no doubt that combo would pull in some really loyal fans.

But The Snack Bar folks are going to have to change their menu from Tacos and BBQ to Deep Dish Pizza and Coneys (from Hofman's in Syracuse) with Kraut!

I might have to rethink my pick if they both win their games today.

Re: Greys (grays) 3 grays came in a short time ago in NY: 1. Old Guys Rule trained by McLaughlin, 2. Grey Foose and 3. Say Goodbye. All Gray Trifecta for sure at Aqueduct Race 4. Now that is cool.

Thanks Steve and Zenyatta since this is supposed to be about her.

On my tombstone i plan to have

"I Digress" engraved on it! :)

I am best at that.

23 Jan 2011 2:38 PM
Ginger

SUE M - Haynesfield also has a fb page and one for Mine that Bird - the movie... There are some cute videos of MTB playing ball on youtube.

23 Jan 2011 6:21 PM
mookies hero

Does anyone know if a decision has been made regarding the stallion? I read somewhere that Zen's mother has been sent to Henrythenavigator ( same as Rags to Riches at one time) and Ginger Punch was first sent to Bernidini and Proud Spell to Indian Charlie. These breeder/owners are very "in the wind" as they are being bold in not going to the tried and true. Zenyatta's original breeder is just a genius for breeding to Street Cry when he was vitually unknown. But I agree with Mike Smith, no stallion is good enough for her which is why some of us would have liked another year (perhaps on grass in Europe)

23 Jan 2011 6:28 PM
slewforever

So breeding to Bernardini constitutes not breeding to the 'tried and true'.  Where've you been since 1976???

23 Jan 2011 9:28 PM
Dani

mookies hero - re the stallion -

Per zenyatta.com they are finalizing the details next week.

23 Jan 2011 10:07 PM
Linda/Maryland

Came back today to read, again, about Zenyatta..... Can't get enough of her. What beautiful pictures. She and her pal seem so content. What a miracle she is.

Thanks again Steve~!

23 Jan 2011 10:11 PM
jayjay

Vertigeneux was bred to Henrythenavigator and the baby was supposedly due out mid of last year.  I posted in the Maiden Watch and that was the information I got.  I haven't gone back to it but thanks for reminding me.  I wanted to know if they were going to race Zen's half sibliing or not.

24 Jan 2011 12:00 AM
Dr Drunkinbum

Paula Higgins

  How fast they turn on you. Remember when everyone was praising Mr. Jackson as a savior, and so smart and courageous with his handling of Rachel giving her the chance to beat the boys making her a national hero and bringing new fans into the sport, and for extending the career of Curlin to schieve his greatness when all of the other top 3yo's were retired early eventhough they were healthy. Then one false move and wham- all of a sudden he's an ogre that has done nothing right. Enjoy your good will from the public if you are famous. They will turn on you and rip you to shreds and cut off your head in a second, laughing all the way to the chopping block, and through the city with your head on a stick.

24 Jan 2011 12:03 AM
wingbeats551

Thanks so much for sharing and keeping us informed. Zen looks great! I'm so glad she's at Lane's End with people who care so much for and about her.

24 Jan 2011 12:05 AM
jayjay

Here's the link to the news of Zenyatta's half sister from Mar of last year :

www.bloodhorse.com/.../vertigineux-foals-half-sister-to-zenyatta

Going to do some digging to see where she's at :)

24 Jan 2011 12:05 AM
Dr Drunkinbum

Slew

   Things Change (Great movie by the way). What was Borel's winning percentage before the 2007 Derby?  Answer-0%. What was his winning percentage in The Derby from 2007-2010? Answer: 75%.

24 Jan 2011 1:48 AM
Dani

Correction - the Mosses are finalizing details of stallion for Zenyatta THIS week.  

24 Jan 2011 5:51 AM
gailg

Sue M~ Besides Uncle Mo and Blind Luck, I found the following yesterday on fb: Lava Man, Funny Cide, Evening Jewel. I'm sure there's more but I didn't have time to do more searching. BTW, I posted on Blind Luck's wall 2x and got a response both times!

24 Jan 2011 6:10 AM
Penny in TX

Linda in TX, thanks for the info about the bridal tag. I can tell from all your posts that you have a huge heart and you are quite informative. I fully agree with your post on 12:32, why run any horse into the ground before they have a chance to enjoy being a horse. Zenyatta has certainly paid her dues.

24 Jan 2011 10:30 AM
Slew

Dr D..really?...I think you meant slewforever.  This Slew is partial to Bernardini as a mate for Zen...

because he's already been proven with his stakes winners.  I also like Einstein...but he,as yet, is unproven.  I simply prefer the outbreeding in both cases.  Dottie Ingordo appears to be the expert in this case.  I have to leave the choice in her more than capable hands.  

24 Jan 2011 12:28 PM
Slew

ABF: We don't have to wait...the girls were just in the barn discussing their prospects:

Zen:  Mmm…just take a look at that big stud muffin out in that field!

PQ:  I don’t know Z…isn’t he your Uncle?

Zen: Thanks Queenie, I guess I just got carried away with myself.

PQ: Well…when will you introduce me to him?  I’m free and available!

Zen: Rock may be a bit more than you can handle…maybe you should keep your dainty hooves grounded.  What about that Capone?

PQ:  Never happen…he’s such a tease.  When it comes right down to it, I’m still royalty.  

Zen: Baby girl, you definitely are royalty, but still a princess.  

PQ: Don’t remind me!  By the way, how did you swing HOY?

Zen: I batted my eyelashes, danced a few steps, and kissed Steve Haskin.

PQ: Now, that’s the way to go.  Wish I had thought of it.  But honestly, when’s your first date?

Zen: I have no idea…don’t even know who the lucky guy is yet.

PQ: Do you think they’ll let you know anytime soon?

Zen: I hope so.  There are so many cute hunks out there.  I wish I could choose for myself.  I’m really not into blind dates….you know how terrible they can sometimes go.

PQ: Isn’t Dottie doing the choosing?

Zen: That’s what I hear.  But Dottie has impeccable taste.  I really trust her judgment.

PQ: Hope that special guy doesn’t need a stepladder!

Zen: Now, now Queenie!  Remember our blood oath…sisters before misters.

24 Jan 2011 12:56 PM
Love 'em all

Remember Hootie and Freddie, a couple of Zenyatta's best buddies at HP?  Just read the most delightful story/update (at another site) of Hootie and Freddie which you folks will really enjoy.  Too, you "Facebook" members will like to know Hootie has his own account.  Sounds like that fella is living the good life being retired from the track.

I don't "Facebook", but I do "Google", and found the above mentioned info there.  So, just google ... "Freddie Wilson and Hootie , Off into the Sunset" ... and enjoy.

Cheers to Freddie and Hootie!  

24 Jan 2011 1:00 PM
Nancy in IL

I have been involved with race horses on and off since 1979, but never one the quality of Zenyatta. It is good to know that she has always been a priority of her owners and trainer. I got to see her schooling in the paddock on Breeder's Cup weekend and had no camera. Your article brought tears to my eyes just remembering the success story she was and hopefully will be as a broodmare. Can't wait to see that foal. Reading about the adjustment process was very heartwarming. I can understand how experienced horsemen could get giddy just getting to see her. Thanks for a great piece.

24 Jan 2011 1:29 PM
NU2TX

One of your strengths as a writer is to instinctively know what questions your readers would love to ask. The other is to provide us with information we want to know but didn't know it yet.

This Zenyatta piece is wonderful, for both reasons. I have worried that a less glam life would not suit Queen Z, or that she might not be breeding sound at the jolly old age of 6. Glad to know she is happy and that she is showing an interest beyond outracing the boys.

Thank you!

24 Jan 2011 3:32 PM
Linda in Texas

Too clever for words, Slew.

Love your imagination.

Last week Steve said we would know soon. So at least it is closer to sooner this week than it was last week!

Curiosity is hard to handle. But

the wondering makes it fun.

24 Jan 2011 3:48 PM
Mookies Hero

Thanks for all the info on Zenyatta's future mate.

Slew-I only meant that at the time of Ginger Punch's breeding I heard that she was going to A.P. Indy and then she was sent to Bernardini when he (at that point ) did not have any foals of racing age. So at that time the choice between A.P. Indy and Bernardini or for that matter Tapit was interesting. Maybe price was a condideration with Adena Spings. Anyway, I think Enstein would be good too. The Mosses said they breed for soundness so that has me intrigued.

24 Jan 2011 3:58 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Slew,

Thanks for the dialogue between Zen and Pirate Queen!  Loved it.

Are you still in the "genetic" war in the other blog?  I was reading all that and totally agree with you about the inherited genetic traits and acquired traits and things a thoroughbred may have a propensity for, and the changes in a stallions food.  I totally get it.  I was cracking up about the part of A.P's fluids not being as "mucho macho" due to a dietary change.  Very clever!  Can't wait for the announcement of Zenyatta's mate.  I like A.P., Smart Strike, Bernardini, and Alex, and Hard Spun.  Do more dialogue after Zen finds out who her man is.

24 Jan 2011 4:12 PM
Seabiscuit

@ Slew - LOL

@ Love 'em all - Thank you for the link to Freddie and Hootie! What a lovely article!

24 Jan 2011 5:31 PM
Slew

Unfortunately for all of you, I'll probably be back with a new conversation when we know who the lucky man is.

ABF: Some just refuse to grasp the essential difference between genetic vs acquired traits, and I grow weary of trying to explain that being myopic just might be a result of too much blogging.  Ranagulzion will simply have to figure it out for himself.

Thank you all...hope you had some fun.

24 Jan 2011 7:23 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Slew, you got me dialogin' now!

In the Barn (the barren mare's barn)at Lane's End:

Pirate Queen:  "Oh Zen, please teach us how to line dance to that cool country song!"

Zenyatta:  "Ok, Ewok.  Rev up that CD, cool cat.  Ok, girls.  Line up side by side, cross your left hoof over your right taking a little step, and then again.  Jump, turn, and do it again."

All the nickering mares line up and try the line dance or the Haskin dubbed "California Two Step."  Capone and Ewok are singing along to the Trace Adkins song:

"...Why she's ridin' in the middle of a pickup truck,

Blarin' Charlie Daniels

Yellin' Turn it up!

They raised her up a lady but there's one thing they couldn't avoid--------------

Ladies Love Country Boys........"

Zenyatta:  "Ok, girls, let's take our dance out to the paddock and show some of these "country colts" a thing or two and make 'em drool."

Pirate Queen:  "Oh, no Zen, I am not ready.  My hair is too gray to go out like this!"

Zenyatta:  Don't worry, girlfriend, I'll order you some hair color from Rodeo Drive from my stylist and you are getting a shiny new bridle tag from Linda, you'll be beautiful."

Pirate Queen:  "Oh Zen, you are so good to me, a true friend.  I was nobody until you came along."

Capone:  "Women! What am I, chopped liver?"

Ewok:  "Ladies Love Country Boys, and you ain't "country" Capone."

"They never understand why their Princess falls

For some camouflage britches

And a Southern boy drawl

They raised her up a lady

But there's one thing they couldn't avoid

Ladies Love Country Boys!!!!!!!!!"

Go get 'em, girls!!!!!!!!!

24 Jan 2011 8:18 PM
candie cartier

congratulation with the special queen zenyatta,I have tears everytime I read her news and new photos she is like an angel from heaven and she is not an ordinary horse she is the special and greatest horse.

24 Jan 2011 11:50 PM
Tonka's Destiny

Thank you for the update and the photos. Zenyatta is truly a gift from the Great Spirit and deserves to be treated as such. Thank oyu Mr Haskin, for sharing your visit with us.{:-) HAIL TO THE QUEEN!

25 Jan 2011 12:12 AM
Slew

ABF: That's just too cute.  I can imagine them line dancing down the paddock. (Where's Two Step Salsa when you need him?)

It would appear the genetics discussion is not over, as I might have hoped.  R will simply not let go.  Hope we're not boring anyone.

(Never mind...I'm getting pretty bored with it myself).

25 Jan 2011 8:28 AM
Penny in TX

ABF and Slew, love the dialogue and humor, please keep it up. It certainly is not boring, what imagination both of you have! Love it!

25 Jan 2011 12:31 PM
Rose W.

Thanks so much for the news of Zenyatta.

I didn't see any mention of Miss Z getting aloe vera juice for her tummy.  John mentioned it in his 60 minute interview. What Say?

25 Jan 2011 4:17 PM
Mike Relva

STEVE

Do you think it's likely later this year there will be a fan day allowed for visiting Zenyatta? I hope so.

26 Jan 2011 9:51 AM
Slew

1-26-2011

Overheard in a snowy field in Kentucky:

Pirate Queen:  Zen....Zen!  Why are you prancing around the field and acting crazy?  What's with the new dance steps?

Zenyatta (stops to catch her breath) Oh...Queenie, haven't you heard?  I'm engaged!  I love, love, love it!  Just look at my ring!

PQ: Ohhh that’s awesome!  How did you fit it over your hoof?

Zen: Oh boy, it wasn’t easy…I mean…I have only one toe on each leg.  Oooh…do I have it on the right hoof?  Tell me…I want to be sure I get it right.

PQ:  It’s fine…but it’s a bloody big diamond!  It really sparkles when you dance around in the snow.  Soooo…who is the lucky guy?

Zen:  mmmmmmmmmmmm…He’s fabulous, and I’m thrilled!

PQ: So…who is it?

Zen:….mmmmm

PQ: Do you even know who it is…after all, it might be an arranged marriage…have you met him yet?

Zen…mmmmmmmm

PQ: Zen! Stop it!  Just tell me who it is.  Do you really know who it is?

Zen:  Oh Queenie…yes I do…they told me last night, and I’m happier than I could have thought possible!

PQ: Soooo…who is he?

Zen:…mmmmm

PQ: Zen?????

Zen: I know but I promised not to tell.  Jerry and Ann want to make an official engagement announcement, and I’ve been sworn to secrecy!

PQ: But Zen…I’m your BFF!  How could you not tell ME?

Zen:  Okay…but promise me you won’t tell a soul?

PQ: I promise, I promise, I don’t even know Steve Haskin’s phone number.  How could I tell him?

Zen: Well, it’s……………

Unfortunately, at this point, Zenyatta and Pirate Queen trotted off to another corner of the field.   (to be continued…)

26 Jan 2011 10:35 AM
Jean in Chicago

Slew & ABF;  Have you over heard any conversations from the stallion barn?  I'd love to listen in on a conversation among AP Indy, Curlin & Smart Strike (the suave, debonair, sophisticated older guys) and the smack-talkin', muscle-flexing younger boys about the hot, new girl on the block!

26 Jan 2011 11:38 AM
Kathleen

Steve,

Fabulous article and incredible photos.  Perhaps you already answered this and I didn't see the response:  Any news on Rachel Alexandra and when she will be bred to Curlin.  If I recall, someone from Bloodhorse was going to visit her and take photos for an update.  Did I dream that?  Was it mentioned in one of your blogs or articles?

thanks,

26 Jan 2011 12:35 PM
Slew

(continued conversation)

Pirate Queen:  Hello...hello...operator????  Operator? Can you please give me Steve Haskin's phone number?

PQ:  Hello...Hello...Steve???

Steve: Hi Queenie...what's new?

PQ: You won't believe it! It's official!  Zenyatta is engaged!

Steve: To whom?

PQ: Oh, I promised I wouldn't tell, but now I'm so excited.  Zen is beside herself, rolling in the Paddock.

Steve: Please Queenie..just tell me.

PQ: Oh he's so handsome, and I'm so jealous.

Steve: Please, please Queenie, let me in on the big news.

PQ: BERNARDINI!!!!!!!

Steve: Wow!.  That's just what Slew wanted.  She's going to be happy.

PQ: That's what Zenyatta wanted, and I think she's doing cartwheels in the meadow.

26 Jan 2011 1:27 PM
Pat

Bernardini, eh? Steve Haskin last year mentioned Bernardini and Zenyatta were the two most physically impressive horses of their gender during the 00's decade. I was more of a Barbaro fan in 2006, but I don't mind if Zenyatta will have her weekend at Bernie's! Both lost their last race at CD, but both are beautiful horses that can produce a baby of blue blood and PURE HOTNESS! Will anticipate this more than when Brad and Angelina first had Shiloh. Bernie, you lucky young stud, you! 

26 Jan 2011 3:11 PM
jayjay

Wow...Bernardini.  Never thought of him but I think I like the match up.  Not sure about him being  younger as I don't know much how these match up works but I'm hoping her first will be the next TC winner :)

26 Jan 2011 3:23 PM
Linda in Texas

Slew and Alex'sBigFan, you have 'Zenyatta's Man' so we are all waiting for the diaglogue.

And Slew,you picked it, Bernardini.

What'cha bet the foal is dark brown? Really dark Brown, sorta "Slew himself Dark Brown." He is a 'stud muffin' i hope Zenyatta agrees.

I am happy they picked Bernardini for the mere reason, Seattle Slew

is above all at the top of my

sentimental favorites. Love him now as much as i did year's ago and his legend and legacy lives on.

Superb choice.

The experts on how many furlongs,  quarter poles and times and all that intricate stuff can be hashed out by the pros on here.

I go by build or confirmation and

enthusiasm to race.

How do you like the "B" and "Z" match Steve???

26 Jan 2011 7:05 PM
Linda in Texas

Slew - your post re: Bernardini was not on when i wrote mine.

Very clever one - "Z rolling in the paddock and doing cartwheels in the meadow."

Indeed aren't we all.

26 Jan 2011 7:18 PM
sherpa

Slew & ABF, your Zen/PQ conversations are a hoot!  I LOL'd at PQ calling Steve Haskin. :-)

It's a very good match.  Both have perfect conformation, B's precocious stamina will complement Z's classic stamina - and I just hope the foal-to-be is destined for JS's barn.

26 Jan 2011 10:26 PM
Linda in Texas

jayjay-Bernardini was foaled in 2003.

Zenyatta foaled April 1,2004. So

Bernardini is a smidge older, unless you were thinking an 'older' stallion than younger Bernardini.

I bet that is what you meant, i was taking the word literaally.

An article from '06 states Bernardini is from aristocracy. Can trace his female side back to 1821.

In a post i stated i like to pick a winner from what their shoulders and buttocks look like. Well, he has got those locked up with a grade of A +.

Steve, i bet you have been bustin' the buttons off your shirts to tell this. I know you knew. But you kept the secret. And that is a good thing.

Slew, do you or Alex'sBigFan call Bernardini a "Stud Muffin?"

I think the name suits him well.

27 Jan 2011 12:24 AM
Mookies Hero

Just heard the news about Bernardini and Zenyatta. Apparently, Zenyatta's dam also went to Bernadini and the filly is a real wow. So I imagine Maverick Productions had some input. Absolutely wonderful. The foal should be beautiful. Do you know if they want a filly or a colt?

27 Jan 2011 3:06 AM
Slew

Stallion Barn at Lane's End.

QR, AP, Mineshaft, Smart Strike, Lemon Drop Kid,Candy Ride:

$%^&*@#$%&^&&*

Rock Hard Ten: What are all you boys complaining about?  AP, turn around and tell me what's wrong.

AP: I'm the best stud in North America, and your niece never even noticed me.  

RH10: Honestly, AP...aren't you a little old for Zen?

AP: Maybe...but why did they have to go and pick a stud from another farm?  Look at us!  We're the best!

RH10:  Come off it!  That's like my own little girl.  I'm just not sure any of you are good enough for her.

AP: But why pick Bernardini?...just because he has all those stakes winners?

RH10: But AP, he's your son!

AP: "#$%&^#@$%^&!",as he kicks his water bucket at RH10.

27 Jan 2011 8:26 AM
Penny in TX

These 2 beautiful horses are going to make equally beautiful horses. Hopefully they will add a little romance and candlelight to the event, LOL! I am sure Zenyatta will want her favorite beer also!

27 Jan 2011 12:10 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Been snowed under, literally in NJ but thank goodness have resurfaced to hear the great news!

At Lane's End, Stallion's Barn:

Smart Strike:  "I told ya, A.P. that the Darley gang was ridin' in here and you wouldn't believe me."

A.P. Indy:  "Her father must have had a hand in sending this Bernie guy here.  What's the guy's name, Houdini?"

Smart Strike:  "You sired him so it's all in the family kind of."

A.P. Indy:  "I sired so many you think I know the whipper snappers' names?  I'll get even with Street Cry, this is his doing and she's my girl."

Curlin:  (dejected) "I was so sure it was me.  But Jess says I am engaged to a fox named Rachel so I am ok."

Quality Road:  "Oh lucky you.  Tough luck A.P. but us younger bucks are gonna call the shots from here on in."

A.P. Indy: (to Q.R.) "Yeah, and just one phone call to Johnny Velasquez will get you ridden straight back to New York."

Capone:  (overhearing, little busy body that he is) "Geeeeeez Louise guys.  She's over there dancing and picking out baby names already!  And you thought all that dancing was for you A.P., fagettaboudit!"

A.P. Indy:  (to Capone) "Look you little squirt, leave the manly jobs to us.  Now go over there and spy and find out what she thinks of this Houdini.  To Mineshaft and Smart Strike:  "C'mon we got some googling to do, we gotta find some LA plastic surgeons to make us look younger, that'll do it!"

Capone:  (walking away naming baby names) "Albertrani, Zendinyetti, Zarbenatta, Zindini, ......."

27 Jan 2011 6:13 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Slew,

So happy for you it is Bernardini and you get the Slew right in there.  What a good looking foal this is going to be.  I loved your Zen & P.Q. latest conversations, with P.Q. calling Steve!  Great!

Linda in Texas,

It was Slew I think that gave Bernardini the Stud Muffin name, not me.  He sure is one too!

Sherpa,

Thanks.  Glad you enjoy the dialogues!

27 Jan 2011 6:25 PM
Slew

I think Bernardini is the perfect "stud muffin"  but Rock Hard Ten looks more like "a hunk, a hunk o'burning love".

27 Jan 2011 7:41 PM
Slew

I should add that since my lovely Seattle Slew is the only horse I've know to continue passing down his surname to his progeny..when the foal comes...colt or filly..should we name it...

Zendini Slew  ;-P

27 Jan 2011 7:53 PM
Jean in Chicago

Slew:  Thanks for the boys side of "straight from the horses' mouths" posting! LOL again.

Linda in TX:  tracing way back in some pedigrees starts to look strange when the dam gets listed without a name, only as "Mr. Smith's bay mare"!

28 Jan 2011 12:27 AM
Especially Horses

Beautiful, just an awesome match; the next step in this journey……waiting to hear she’s in foal.  I have my fingers and toes crossed.  Can’t help but think about Genuine Risk.  Speaking of Genuine Risk, does anyone remember that beautiful BloodHorse Cover Page of Genuine Risk and Genuine Award?  Genuine Risk is slightly ahead of Genuine Award and her head is turned back looking at him, with what can only be described as “a look of love”, as they trot across the field.  

28 Jan 2011 12:50 PM
txhorsefan

Slew, I love the dialogue in the stallion barn - that is too funny.  I enjoy your creativity!  Thank you!

I was so excited today when Runflatout won his first race, I just had to come here to say congratulations.  I hope Zookeeper was there to see him run!!  It's been so much to follow him to this, his first start, and he did not disappoint.  Wow!

Steve, thank you for letting me highjack this thread.  Now back to our regularly scheduled Zenyatta admiring!

29 Jan 2011 9:22 PM
jayjay

CONGRATS!!! ZOO and RUNFLATOUT!!!! Awesome first race!!

I was going "Go Zoo! Go Zoo!" the whole race, and people were wondering who I was cheering for.

30 Jan 2011 12:47 PM
jayjay

Linda In Texas : Yes, I meant a younger stallion.  He does produce winners and I think it's a good match.  I was hoping for Tiznow because of his speed but I can't really complain.  Any babies from Zenyatta would be a blessing specially if they carry that charisma and dancing skills like their mama :)

30 Jan 2011 8:21 PM
Alex'sBigFan

I'll put my dialogue on again, I think it got lost.  Since you guys asked for one, sorry if it is a duplicate.  Steve, use this one, not my first one.

We're back at the Stallion's Barn at Lane's End:

Smart Strike:  "I done told ya A.P. that the Darley gang was ridin' in here but you wouldn't listen."

A.P. Indy:  "Yeah, yeah.  What's this one's name again, "Houdini"? Yeah, I'll make him disappear as fast as he gets here!!!"

Smart Strike:  "But A.P. you sired him so it's really all family."

A.P. Indy:  "I sired so many do you think I remember all these dang young Whipper Snapper's names?  This is her father's doing, he sent him.  I'll get even with Street Cry!"

Curlin:  (a little dejected) "I thought it would be me.  But Jess says I am engaged to a Fox named Rachel so I'll be ok."

Quality Road:  "Lucky you.  But

it seems like young sires call the shots from here on in."

A.P. Indy:  "Speaking of "calls" Q.R., I hear it takes just one call to that cute Johnny Velasquez and you get ridden straight back to New York, toll booths and all!"

Quality Road:  "Gulp."

Mineshaft:  "Now, A.P. calm down and be nice."

Capone:  (Yep, Capone is over there too doubling as a spy) "Hee, hee, hee.  A.P. do you think all that dancing over there was for you?  She's over there dreaming up baby names already.  Fagettaboudit!!!!!"

A.P. Indy:  "Look you little squirt, leave the manly jobs to us. You just go over there and let me know what they are saying about this "Houdini."  Smart Strike, c'mon lets go googling and find me an LA plastic surgeon to make me look younger, that'll do it, I'll look better than Street Cry and Bernardini put together.  Hmmmph!"

Capone:  (walks away giggling, muttering baby names to himself) "Albertrani, Zenardini, Darzenetta, Bernardetta, Zindi.....Albertrani, where'd that come from, oh yeah, Houdini's trainer!"

31 Jan 2011 5:44 PM
Slew

ABF:  Ha.ha..guffaw..tee hee..poor little Capone...gets all the dirty work.

Great fun!

01 Feb 2011 10:36 AM
Alex'sBigFan

Linda in Texas,

Do you know if Pirate Queen's tag got there yet and if they put it on her?  I hope Steve can have someone take a photo of it and put it on bloodhorse.  I love how we are all worried about Pirate Queen too.

Slew,

Yeah our dialogues were fun.  I like your name Zendini Slew.  Where does the immaculate conception take place, do they bring Bernardini to Lane's End for the candlelight dinner? It should be happening in Feb. I think?

03 Feb 2011 5:20 PM
Alex'sBigFan

Pat,

I just caught the cute name you said above, "Weekend at Bernies."  One of Bernardini's foals should be named that since A.P. Indy and Weekend Surprise (dam) created Bernardini, therefore Weekend at Bernies!  It doesn't get more blueblood than Bernardini, he's got A.P. Indy, Secretariat, Seattle Slew, Spectacular Bid, amongst others in there!  Wow!  What a foal this is going to be.

The most watched equine pregnancy ever!!!!!!!!!

04 Feb 2011 8:59 PM
patteel

I became a big fan early in Zen's career, as soon as I found out she was Forego's great-niece. And she has proven to have his heart and will to win. I am sure he is looking down on her with family pride. And who knows maybe her foal will be a healthy Forego reborn. Goodness knows I do hope so.

19 Apr 2011 5:29 AM

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