by Anne Peters
Female lines that continue to produce top-class runners.
by Anne Peters
Voting for the 2009 older female category has been revised to reverse an error made by a voter who mistakenly voted for Icon Project instead of Zenyatta.
Andrew Rosen announced Oct. 23 that his 4-year-old filly Icon Project, winner of the 2009 Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I), has been retired due to a tendon injury.
Now that Rachel Alexandra is through for the year, it is time for Zenyatta, the defending Queen of all Turfdom, to take center stage, and her presence will be a welcome sight in a year where the Breeders' Cup has gone a bit haywire.
Looking at Icon Project's last three starts, her only races on dirt in an 11-race career, one can only wonder just how special this 4-year-old daughter of Empire Maker is.
PORTER ON PEDIGREES, by Alan Porter
It seems 2009 would be a year for filly phenoms, and they're all the result of young, distance-loving sires.
Favored Icon Project, ridden by Julien Leparoux, demolished her rivals with a Rachel Alexandra-type performance Aug. 30 in the $400,000 Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race course.
Multiple graded stakes winner Unbridled Belle tops a trio of charges from the barn of Todd Pletcher in the $400,000 Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I), Saratoga's Aug. 30 headliner.
Swift Temper dictated the pace for jockey Alan Garcia and kicked away in the stretch to post a surprisingly easy 2 1/4-length upset in the $1-million Delaware Handicap (gr. II) July 19 at Delaware Park.
Team Valor International's Unbridled Belle has been simply terrific in her career at Delaware Park, winning five of seven starts at the track including the 2007 Delaware Handicap (gr. II). On July 19, the 6-year-old mare will try to continue her domination when she takes on six rivals in the $1 million event.
Heavy rain forced the $245,000 New York Stakes (gr. IIT) off the turf and that was just fine with Star Crown Stable's Icon Project, who took over from tiring favorite Criticism at the top of the lane and sailed to a 13 1/4-length victory June 20 on the slop at Belmont Park.
Darley Stable's homebred Criticism took advantage of soft early fractions en route to a wire-to-wire one-length victory in the $150,000 La Prevoyante Handicap (gr. IIT) April 25 on the Calder Race Course turf.
Criticism, winner of two grade III stakes in her four American starts, is the 121-pound highweight in the $150,000 La Prevoyante Handicap (gr. IIT), the first of two turf stakes events on the opening Saturday of the spring/summer meet at Calder Race Course April 25.
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