Peppers Pride Equals Mark With Number 16

Peppers Pride Equals Mark With Number 16
Photo: Coady Photography
Peppers Pride cruises to win number 16 in the Russell & Helen Foutz Distaff Handicap.
Undefeated Peppers Pride equaled Thoroughbred racing's record of 16 consecutive victories when she came from off the pace to win the $75,000 Russell & Helen Foutz Distaff Handicap for New Mexico-breds at SunRay Park and Casino in Farmington, N.M., April 26.

The 5-year-old mare joins Citation, Cigar, Mister Frisky, and Hallowed Dreams as the only Thoroughbreds to win 16 races in a row, considered one of racing's greatest records. Peppers Pride is expected to attempt to break the longstanding mark this summer at Ruidoso Downs, possibly in the Lincoln Handicap at six furlongs July 27.

Joel Marr conditions Peppers Pride for owner/breeder Joe Allen. Peppers Pride began her career with a victory in a 5 1/2-furlong stakes trial race at Ruidoso Downs July 16, 2005. Her latest score was her second trip to the winner's circle in 2008.

Sent off as the 2-5 favorite in the field of eight, Peppers Pride did not have an easy time of it in the 6 1/2-furlong test around two turns. Breaking from post 7 on the six-furlong oval, she was caught a little wide into the first turn and was bumped twice. Racing in sixth down the backstretch, she found herself perhaps as many as 10 lengths behind the pacesetter, Charlie's Pizzazz. But jockey Carlos Madeira, who has ridden the daughter of Desert God in all of her races, did not panic.

Peppers Pride soon found her best stride, and, moving as a team with second choice Bossy Bush, easily swept past Charlie's Pizzazz rounding the final turn after opening quarter-mile splits of :21 4/5 and :44 2/5. At the top of the lane, Peppers Pride established control and under mild urging from Madeira kept to her task to win by two lengths over Bossy Bush in a time of 1:17. Let the Musicbegin finished third.

Bossy Bush broke down past the wire and was euthanized after suffering a broken right front leg, according to SunRay racing secretary Sean Winsor. Her jockey, Jorge M. Bourdieu, sustained a broken collarbone, he said.

Spotting her rivals between six and 14 pounds, Peppers Pride carried 127 to victory and paid $2.80 for her second lifetime win at SunRay Park. the victory, worth $45,000, increased her earnings to $861,665. All of her victories have come against New Mexico-breds at distances between 5 1/2 furlongs and one mile.

Peppers Pride, coming off a win in the Sydney Valentini Handicap at Sunland Park at one mile in her '08 debut March 23, handed Bossy Bush her only loss in five starts.

(Chart, Equibase)

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