Happy for the horse, her connections, and her fans. However, you may as well change the name of the award to Best in Show as opposed to Horse of the Year after giving her the trophy over Blame. You just can't compare their bodies of work imo. Horse Racing - The logic of illogic.
"bad for racing if HOY can be won with that schedule."
..."you may as well change the name of the award to Best in Show as opposed to Horse of the Year after giving her the trophy over Blame."
You know what you guys? This isn't the demise of the Eclipse Awards. Zenyatta's triumph tonight doesn't mean anything for the Eclipse Award in the long term going forward.
The fact is that she is a horse that we've never seen before and probably will never see again. Forget the historical ranking stuff...is she better than Kelso, 'Bid, Ruffian, or Seattle Slew...of course she's not, and her zealous fans that think she is seriously need to get a grip!
The fact is that she has touched fans of this sport like no other since John Henry, and he was a grouchy old guy that barely tolerated the adulation. She was totally the opposite.
I guess what I'm saying is that the HOTY Eclipse Award is just fine, thank you very much. A Zenyatta will come along again maybe never, and her winning that award is as it should be. Next year, and all the years to come, the HOTY vote won't have to deal with a mare like Zenyatta.
By the way folks...if I had a vote that counted, I would have voted for Blame.
come on pas--"a horse like we have never seen before and likely will never see again"?????
The one time that I actually watched Z race, she was beaten.
Though I fully expect the record to be modified to actually make her the winner of last year's BC Classic and re-establish her undefeated record.
No such award for PERSONAL ENSIGN?
Didn't she retire undefeated also?
So--4 life or death wins over west coast 3rd-stringers and a loss in her biggest race of the year is enough to overcome the actual winning accomplishments of BLAME and GOLDIKOVA?
So--the writers have spoken!
A wonderful racehorse though.
She was obviously more than special.
Really doesn't matter my way though it just doesn't seem right.
I'm guessing more than a few voters saw this as a "make-up award." I feel sorry for the connections of Blame but Zenyatta has one HOY award which is the right number, it just has the wrong year on the trophy.
I'm obviously glad she won, but as I've said before it's a popularity contest and really doesn't matter. The fact that a large majority of the voters come from east of the Mississippi does say something about the reach of this great animal, though. She was the best last year and didn't get it. I was surprised she won this year, but she did. So it goes. She won because she got more people involved in racing than any horse since Secretariat, apart from her great record. Walk down the street and ask some strangers who Blame is. They won't know. That's the difference.
Again, if you don't want a popularity contest, don't leave it to a vote. Set up objective criteria--most G1 wins, most money won, most G1 winner beaten, BC Champ, whatever spider thinks, whatever. As it is, it will remain like the MVP in baseball--subjective and open to debate, whoever wins.
Forest is our new stable jockey. I might be a sap but I twigged straight away that she was a great jockey in the making . We needed to branch out and having a Maryland based jockey will turn over a new leaf for us.
I couldn't agree more with Mike's point. Zenyatta was awesome throughout her entire career. She did it at 3, 4, 5, and 6, a superb achievement in this era of racing. Unfortunately every year she raced there was one horse that one-upped her. Curlin in 07/08, Rachel Alexandra in 09, and the one horse who beat her, Blame in 2010. The best older horse of the year was Blame, there's no debating it, it's fact of the matter. He beat her on the biggest stage of the year in the race Zenyatta had been pointing to since December 2009.
Zenyatta received the HOY award not because she was the best horse THIS YEAR, but because of her career resume. Hmmph. Bogus.
A better analogy, Mr. DeNiro, might be the Golden Globes. Social Network v Kings Speech. Which was the better movie? Which took home the hardware? That's what happens when you put it to a vote. Popularity contest. (btw, DeNiro was awesome at the Golden Globes).
Not trying to be a smart arse or start a meaningless crossfire but a friend of mine emailed a question I hadn't thought of on the subject of HOY...when I consider he's a huge Z fan (and Mike Smith at one time rode for he and his Dad)..I took it as friendly sarcasm...but...what about Rachel? Didn't we debate this like...forever?...lol
I really have no interest in voting for any awards whether they be all star, athlete of the year etc. Same goes for comparing athletes of different eras. I don't know or care if Citation was better than Secretariat or Cigar. Nobody will ever know so who cares!
Having said that i know the things about racing that bring a lump to my throat are:
1) Forego catching Honest Pleasure in the Marlboro Cup. I still don't think he'll get there in time.
2) Go For Wand's demise in the Breeder's Cup
3) Zenyatta chasing Blame for all she was worth
4) Personal Ensign's win in the Distaff
5) Timely Writer's unfortunate end in the Jockey Club Gold Cup
There are lots more (Affirmed/Alydar; Slew O' Gold/Wild Again/Gate Dancer; Roving Boy's breakdown; etc. etc) This might be an idea for a new thread. Everyone can relate there favorite memories.
I guess my point is that 20 years from now we still might think of Zenyatta. I don't expect to be thinking about Blame.(unless he turns out to be a great sire). We were lucky to have her.