The Brock Talk

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Super Filly Sold for $10 Million. May Be Headed To Preakness

Yesterday The Brock Talk posted a comment by Michael Cusortelli in which he desribed his winning ways in the Derby. Included in his yarn was a somewhat overlooked comment he made in which he referred to gr. 1 Kentucky Oaks winner Rachel Alexandra as "arguably the best filly of our generation."

Well somebody agrees with him because we found out late yesterday that Rachel Alexandra sold for a reported $10 million to Jess Jackson's Stonestreet Stables and Harold T. McCormick of Birmingham, Alabama.

The story gets even better as there is now speculation that her new owners will point her toward the gr. 1 Preakness Stakes, making her the first filly since Excellent Meeting in 1999 to take on the boys in the second leg of the Triple Crown. Even more intriguing is the fact that jockey Calvin Borel rides both Rachel Alexandra and Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird. So if the filly enters the Preakness, who will he be aboard for the May 16 Preakness?

There must be something to the speculation, because more than one racing publication is reporting that Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith will ride Mine That Bird should Borel defect. I don't have the data base to do the research, but I certainly can't remember or even remember reading about a jockey that took off of the Derby winner in order to ride another horse in the Preakness - much less a filly.

Smith, who rode the last 50-1 longshot to win the Kentucky Derby in 2005 when Giacomo shocked us all, guided Chocolate Candy to a 5th place finish in this year's Derby. Chocolate Candy will skip the Preakness and instead train for the gr 1 Belmont Stakes from his home-base in California according to recent reports. No word on if New Mexico residents and Mine That Bird owners Mark Allen and Dr. Leonard Blach have considered Smith their alternate selection because he too is a Roswell, New Mexico native and began his riding career in "The Land of Enchantment" in 1982.

Should Rachel Alexandra race in the second leg of the Triple Crown, she would be only the 53rd filly to start in 136 runnings of the Preakness. Only four fillies have won the Preakness with Nellie Morse being the last to accomplish the feat in 1924. Flocarline (1903), Whimsical (1906) and Rhine Maiden (1924) are the others.

Rachel Alexandra, who won the Kentucky Oaks by a record 20-length margin the day before the Derby at Churchill, was not nominated to the Triple Crown by her previous owners and would have to be supplemented by her new connections. At approximated 5:15 this morning she made the walk through the Churchill Downs stable are from trainer Hal Wiggins barn to the stable of her new conditioner Steve Asmussen. Asmussen won the 2007 Preakness with Curlin, who is now a stallion at Lane's End Farm in Kentucky and is also owned by Jackson. The two-time Horse of the Year currently demands a $75,000 stud fee and plans are to breed Rachel Alexandra and Curlin when her racing career concludes.

Prior to Excellent Meeting, the two previous fillies to start in the Preakness were Kentucky Derby winners Genuine Risk in 1980 and Winning Colors in 1989. Genuine Risk was second in the Preakness behind the D. Wayne Lukas-trained Codex and Winning Colors was third behind winner Risen Star.

The last filly to win a Triple Crown race was Rags To Riches when she took the 2007 Belmont Stakes for trainer Todd Pletcher.

In addition to the Oaks win, Rachel Alexandra’s graded stakes victories include the 2008 Golden Rod Stakes (gr. 2), 2009 Fair Grounds Oaks (gr. 2), and 2009 Fantasy Stakes (gr. 2). Bred in Kentucky, the 3-year-old filly has won five of seven starts and has earnings $958,354.


Anonymous said...

You go girl!!

Brock said...

Anonymous: That's what I like to hear. Now let's see if she has muted the man-smack.