Zenyatta's last race: An oral history [Breeders' Cup]

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Zenyatta

Jerry Moss: “I was holding my breath.”

Gomez: “I rode Blame hard enough where I was trying to let him go ahead and run, but at the same time, I felt like I left a little bit of extra gas in the tank so when she came, he could fight her off.”

Hovdey: “You see her making her move — you know that it’s gotten there 19 times before — and there’s no reason on Earth to think it won’t happen again.”

Gomez: “If you watch the last sixteenth of a mile, I angled out toward her and let Blame feel the heat from her. He pinned his ears and he was not going to let her go by.”

Smith: “I was riding my heart out, riding for all I’m worth.”

Shirreffs: “She was coming and coming — just coming!”

Drape: “And then — boom! — the wire comes up, and there was no doubt she missed.”

Asher: “When the replay went up on the screen, people realized that unless some miracle occurred, there was no way she got there.”

Smith: “I needed Blame to fold just a little bit, but he dug in as hard as he could and held me off.”

Hancock: “He was always a horse that would fight like hell, and once again, he did. I got a picture of the finish here in my office that shows Blame beat her by the scantest of noses.”

Asher: “The wind came out of that crowd.”

Drape: “The press box was as still as could be.”

Denman: “I was almost dazed. It’s the most emotionally drained I’ve been after calling a race.”

Ingordo-Shirreffs: “I turned to the Mosses and said, ‘I think she got beat.’”

Jerry Moss: “Ann and I were shocked. It was just sitting there realizing that you’d lost the race. Simple as that.”

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