Jess Jackson discusses Rachel Alexandra

Jess Jackson, co-owner of the fabulous filly Rachel Alexandra, was on today’s NTRA conference call with reporters and covered a wide range of topics concerning Rachel, including:

— Her schedule for the rest of 2009 is up in the air after Saturday’s Woodward Stakes at Saratoga, a race in which she’ll try to become the first female to win the prestigious race. Jackson said there’s a possibility she could run in the Beldame Stakes at Belmont on Oct. 3 if Zenyatta’s camp commits to the race, an event that will be worth $1 million if both Zenyatta and Rachel enter the starting gate. He also left open the possibility of her meeting Zenyatta after the Breeders’ Cup. He said she also could be finished for 2009 after the Woodward. In other words, nothing is for certain and, as always, the filly’s health and well being are the No. 1 concern.

— Jackson doesn’t want to discuss yet where Rachel fits in as far as the all-time top distaffers, preferring to wait until her career is over. But he did say he believes she’s proven to be Ruffian’s equal. Of course, if she continues to perform like she has, fillies and mares will be compared to her 30 years down the road.

— There’s a good chance that, if she stays healthy, Rachel Alexandra will race on the grass sometime during her 4-year-old campaign. Interestingly, Jackson did not rule out the Dubai World Cup next year, even though the track is changing to a Tapeta artificial surface and he’s voiced his displeasure with synthetics many times, calling them “plastic tracks.” He said it could be a possibility if he’s convinced the tracks are not as harrmful as he perceives them to be.

3 thoughts on “Jess Jackson discusses Rachel Alexandra

  1. You’re being kind Art-it is typical and predictable Jacksonian double speak. As always he takes subtle sly slaps at Zenyatta-IF she would show up-turning the tables making it sound as if she has been ducking them when so far at last check Z can’t enter 3yr olds only races–it’s about perception. Predictable because ESPN finally criticized him in their Travers broadcast-took 3 wagers out right then with friends that by Weds Jess would say something like ‘i MIGHT go to Beldame if chicken Zenyatta shows up”. So so predictable of him, yet he also in same paragraph says no need to race Rachel again this year if she wins the Woodward. He might be convinced to go to Dubai and it’s “benevolent dictatorship but a dictatorship nonetheless” as he called it last time if he could be convinced of synthetic safety like that will happen in next few months but not in time for BC–couldn’t be the purse could it Jess? Nothing can convince you to run here and support this country’s hosting of the BC and the state you live in because Curlin lost there and you are punishing them and Dubai is millions,huh Jess?
    “We have several options, including the Beldame Stakes (gr. I), if Zenyatta should show up for that, Jackson said. But if she should win the Woodward, there would be no necessity to run her again. Shes a tired horse in a way, which is why weve been giving her long periods of time between races. We plan on racing her in 2010. Its going to be her decision whether shes ready to race after the Woodward. If Zenyatta should come to the Beldame that would certainly direct us to that race.”

  2. Outlaw,
    If these two great distaffers don’t meet before the end of the year — I’m hoping it happens after the Breeders’ Cup — then both camps will be at fault. There’s no reason in the world why they can’t get together and come up with some sort of plan with the help of racing officials. But then you know what? Maybe it’s better that they never meet and the debate rages on for years — who was better, Zenyatta or Rachel Alexandra? It’s food for thought.

  3. I truly beleive that Rachel Alexandra and Zenyatta and their respective teams have more than done their part as far as racing is concerned this year. They both ran their hearts out in the races they participated in; and they both have earned a well deserved place in the hearts of racing fans. The day may come when they will run against each other, and when it does, I hope they both come out in good health no matter who gets to the wire first. This has to be a most phenominal year for thoroughbred racing–to have two such wonderful female atheletes running in the same year. A true testiment to the Thoroughbred Breeding Programs. Hats off to all involved with both camps.

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