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Homeracing

What Songbird, Personal Ensign and Zenyatta (might) have in common

Profile Picture: Jen Caldwell

Jen Caldwell

November 3rd, 2016

Princess Rooney and Ashado had five, Beholder four. Dance Smartly did even better with just two while Paseana and Inside Information had three apiece. Azeri boasted only one.

What am I talking about? Why, losses entering the Breeders’ Cup Distaff.

In the 32-year history of the Distaff, only two have managed to exit the race with a perfect record.

In the scheme of things, it may not be all that important. Winning the Distaff brings enough honor and prestige that a few blemishes can be ignored.

But when one finds out that the only two who remained undefeated through the Breeders’ Cup Distaff are Personal Ensign and Zenyatta, well, it takes on new meaning.

Songbird has the opportunity to be counted with that incomparable duo on Friday. The sophomore filly has never truly been challenged in her 11 career starts, winning by open lengths every time, including a 5 3/4-length romp in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) at Keeneland.

That was the first time the Medaglia d’Oro filly had ever raced outside of California, and she continued proving herself this year with a seven-length domination in the Alabama Stakes (G1) at Saratoga and a 5 3/4-length score in the Cotillion Stakes (G1) at Parx Racing.

Songbird will be competing at Santa Anita Park for the Distaff, a track over which she has thus far compiled a five-for-five mark.

However, the Jerry Hollendorfer pupil will be taking on another pair of local runners in Beholder and Stellar Wind. Beholder has racked up an amazing 13-2-0 record from 15 starts over the track while Stellar Wind boasts a 5-4-1-0 line.

Songbird will also be taking on her elders for the first time in Friday’s Distaff, but that really isn’t a concern. There have been plenty of three-year-old fillies who have come out on top in the Distaff, 10 to be exact, and Beholder is included in that group thanks to her 2013 victory.

So will Songbird be able to join Personal Ensign and Zenyatta as an undefeated Breeders’ Cup Distaff winner? We’ll find out on Friday.

Regardless of that, the Distaff is one of the most exciting races of this year’s Breeders’ Cup.

DISTAFF-WINNING 3YO FILLIES

Sacahuista

 

 

1987

Dance Smartly

 

 

1991

Hollywood Wildcat

 

 

1993

Ajina

 

 

1997

Spain

 

 

2000

Unbridled Elaine

 

 

2001

Ashado

 

 

2004

Royal Delta

 

 

2011

Beholder

 

 

2013

Untapable

 

 

2014

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