Friday, March 9, 2012

Zenyatta Delivers a Colt

A new life has been brought into world, and that is the life of the first foal of the great mare Zenyatta. In the hearts of racing and Zenyatta fans, such as me, the hope that the foal will be at least somewhat similar to Zenyatta soars feverishly. During her racing career, we watched Zenyatta fly past horses in late stretch twenty times, our eyes glued to her large, dark frame. The closer she grew to the wire, the louder we cheered and the faster our hearts beat. Now her life as a broodmare has brought us a different form of excitement: an eagerness for the dynasty of Zenyatta to begin.

At approximately 10:00 Eastern Time on March 8, 2012, Zenyatta gave birth to a dark bay colt weighing 130 pounds at Lane’s End Farm in Versailles, Kentucky. Not long after the great mare had foaled, official word, a photo, and a video were posted on the Zenyatta website, which can be reached here

Zenyatta's owners, Jerry and Ann Moss, were on site for the birth of the foal, having arrived at the farm days before the colt was born. It is expected that John and Dottie Shirreffs will arrive soon, as will Mike Smith, the jockey who rode the great mare in seventeen of her twenty starts.

As soon as word was released, racing fans were raving about Zenyatta and her new colt. This was not unlike any other time that exciting Zenyatta news was disclosed. Even in retirement, the 2010 Horse of the Year holds the key to the hearts of many racing fans. It is obvious that Zenyatta is one of the most popular horses of all-time and that she will continue to be.

Clearly, Zenyatta is one of the greatest racehorses ever to set foot on a racetrack. Her colt's sire, Bernardini, was one of the best sophomore runners of the past decade, being voted 2006 Champion Three-Year-Old Male after dominantly winning five graded stakes races – including the Preakness Stakes (GI), the Travers Stakes (GI), and the Jockey Club Gold Cup (GI) – by a combined 40 lengths. Furthermore, Bernardini has become one of the top sires in America. In fact, he is currently the third-leading North American sire by earnings.

Perhaps Zenyatta’s first foal will not live up to expectations, but like Rachel Alexandra’s colt born in January, he will be one of the most-loved horses of all-time. After all, he is the son of one of the most celebrated horses to ever look through a bridle. No matter what he achieves, there’s one thing no one can ever take away from him: he is the first offspring of the great Zenyatta. The colt, whether he ever wears a garland of flowers or not, is already a prince.

Photo: Terri Cage

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