Rapid Redux's streak reaches record 20
A muddy track couldn't slow Rapid Redux's run to horse racing history.
Rapid Redux led from start to finish Monday night for his 20th straight victory, the longest winning streak in modern thoroughbred racing in North America. By winning a starter allowance race at Mountaineer Racetrack in Chester, W.Va., Rapid Redux moved ahead of previous record holders Zenyatta and Peppers Pride.
Rapid Redux, a 5-year-old gelding, faced only three rivals in the record-breaking race. Breaking from the outside post under jockey Deshawn Parker, he quickly took the lead and faced only mild early pressure from Sunshine Bo in the one-mile race. After that challenger fell back, Lady On Fire made a spirited bid on the inside to draw within a half-length. Rapid Redux had plenty in the tank, however, and pull away for a clear victory of four lengths.
The final time was 1 minute, 40.04 seconds. The 1-10 favorite, Rapid Redux returned $2.20 to win.
Whereas Zenyatta had a 19-race streak at the highest level of racing, Rapid Redux has specialized in the starter allowances, low-level races that typically restrict eligibility to horses that have raced for a designated claiming price. Trainer David Wells has shopped for such conditions and entered Rapid Redux at seven different tracks during the streak. In the record-breaking effort, Rapid Redux earned only $9,685 for owner Robert Cole.
Rapid Redux has gone 18 for 18 in 2011 after winning his final two races of 2010.
Zenyatta won her 19 straight from 2007-10, including a victory in the 2009 Breeders' Cup Classic. Peppers Pride won 19 straight from 2005-08 while racing exclusively in New Mexico against state-bred restricted competition.
Cole claimed Rapid Redux for $6,250 on Oct. 13 last year at Penn National. The gelding's last loss was Nov. 8, 2010, in a starter allowance race at Penn National.
Five US horses are reported to have won more than 19 straight races before 1900.
In Puerto Rico, Camarero won 56 straight from 1953-55. Hungarian-bred Kincsem went 54 for 54 in her career from 1876-79 while racing against top competition throughout Europe.