Zenyatta runs record to 17-0 at Hollywood Park

Zenyatta won her 17th consecutive race on Sunday, giving her the

longest winning streak by a modern day thoroughbred in unrestricted

races.

The 6-year-old mare won the $200,000 Vanity Handicap by a

half-length at Hollywood Park, rallying with her usual last-place

move to overtake St Trinians approaching the wire.

Ridden by Hall of Famer Mike Smith, Zenyatta ran 1 1/8 miles on

the synthetic Cushion Track of her home track in 1:49.01 and paid

$3 and $2.10 as the overwhelming 1-5 favorite.

Under the race’s handicap conditions, Zenyatta carried high

weight of 129 pounds — nine to 17 more than her five rivals.

It was Zenyatta’s record third straight win in the race. She won

by 2 1/2 lengths carrying 129 pounds last year and by a half-length

under 124 pounds in 2008.

With the victory, Zenyatta surpassed the 16-race winning streaks

of Cigar, 1948 Triple Crown winner Citation and Mister Frisky.

Zardana was third and Will O Way fourth, followed by Miss Silver

Brook and Cherryblossommiss.

There was no show wagering because the track wanted to avoid a

huge minus show pool, knowing the heavily favored Zenyatta would

have attracted several hundred thousand dollars in bets.

She won on her bobblehead day.

It was Zenyatta’s third start of the year, having won the Santa

Margarita by 1 1/4 lengths at Santa Anita on March 13 and the Apple

Blossom by 4 1/4 lengths at Oaklawn Park on April 9.

Zenyatta won a day after racing’s other female superstar won for

the first time in three starts this year.

Reigning Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra romped to a 10

1/2-length victory on Saturday in the Fleur De Lis Handicap at

Churchill Downs. She ran 1 1/8 miles in 1:48.78 on a hot, humid

day. Trainer Steve Asmussen said Sunday that she appeared to come

out of the race well, and would resume training on Wednesday.

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