By Laura Pugh, of Horsin'
“I'll bet Eclipse voters are really regretting their decision now." "Now what do the voters think of Horse of the Year." "Bet voters wish they could change their minds." This is not even a tenth of what is being said or what has been said, seven months after the Eclipse Awards were announced. Did you get that last bit SEVEN MONTHS.
Yet again, in 2010, we have not one, but two mega mares and all people can do is bash one or the other. Every single blog that mentions the name Rachel Alexandra or Zenyatta deteriorates into a bunch of name calling and insult slinging. Steve Haskin, has now announced he will not be opening any of the pieces he writes on Rachel Alexandra or Zenyatta to comments. Yeah, that is how bad it's gotten.
The constant bashing of these two magnificent mares has got to end. How can anyone with half a brain insult a filly who has run eight straight 100 plus Beyer speed figures in a row? How do you slam a filly who ran against males not once, not twice, but thrice in one year and never once tasted defeat? How do insult a filly who was so quick that she owns three stakes records and comes within fifths of setting track records?
By the same token how does anyone with half a brain insult a mare who is unbeaten lifetime? How do you slam her when she runs down every single horse in front of her, including those in the Breeders Cup Classic? How do call Zenyatta names like polyzen and Rachel Alexandra a miler when both have proven otherwise?
I know what each side wanted last year. I know the arguments and rebuttals for each side so well I could probably argue with myself which horse is better. I understand that Zenyatta's side was let down for a second year in a row and I understand that Rachel fans were shell shocked to see their champion lose her first two races back. What I don't understand is the need revert back to the past and slam Rachel for losing or rub in the fact that Zenyatta did not get Horse of the Year.I understand the questioning of connections, the defending of your favorite, pointing out flaws because that is what debating is about. It is not about who can come up with the most wildly, ridiculous insult.
As of 2010 we have both Zenyatta and Rachel Alexandra back. One continues to keep on trucking along, while the other is just starting to regain her form. So far both are taking rather bizarre paths toward their ultimate goal, the Breeders Cup Classic, but you can rest assured that both connections will have their mares at their peak to give us a show that will never be forgotten.
We need to forget the bitterness of 2009 and look at what we have now and what the future holds. Right now we have two superstars that are on a collision course to Churchill Downs. There they will meet the likes of Quality Road, Rail Trip, and Blame in one final race where winner takes all. People, 2009 ended seven months ago, it's time to move into 2010.