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Older Female Eclipse Award: Zenyatta

Zenyatta was runaway winner.

If you enjoy the suspense that can come with the selction of Eclipse Award winners, just skip right past the category of older female, dominated by Zenyatta the same way she has ruled the racetrack, dispatching foes with unfailing consistency.

The monstrously built daughter of Street Cry--Vertigineux, by Kris S., has het to be defeated after nine starts, seven of them coming during her 4-year-old campaign in 2008. She brought home a trio of grade II events last year, and a quartet of grade I affairs for owners Jerry and Ann Moss, culminating with an awesome last-to-first move in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park. Defending older female champion Ginger Punch and Music Note, who finished behind Zenyatta in the Ladies’ Classic, were the other nominees for divisional honors.

Zenyatta’s trainer, John Shirreffs, noted, “It’s the length of her stride that makes her so special. She actually lengthens it during a race, and not a lot of horses can do that.”

Zenyatta was bred by Eric Kronfeld’s Maverick Productions. Following a post-Breeders’ Cup break, Zenyatta returned to the racetrack in early January, and has begun light preparation for a 2009 campaign.