HRTV TO AIR 2010 DEBUTS OF RACHEL ALEXANDRA, ZENYATTA SATURDAY

HRTV will present a special one-hour live show Saturday featuring the 2010 debuts of 2009 Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra and unbeaten Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Zenyatta.

Entitled “The Champions Return,” the show will be hosted by Scott Hazelton and Gary Stevens, who will be live at the Fair Grounds for Rachel Alexandra’s race, the $200,000 New Orleans Ladies’ Stakes at 1 1/16 miles. It will go as the 10th race at approximately 3:15 p.m. The Santa Margarita will be Santa Anita’s seventh race with a probable post time of 3:40 p.m.

Zenyatta, who is the 127 pound Santa Margarita highweight, is expected to use the race as a steppingstone to the “Race of the Ages” against Rachel Alexandra in the $5 million Apple Blossom Handicap at Oaklawn Park on Friday, April 9.

“She worked very well Friday morning,” trainer John Shirreffs said of her six furlong move in 1:11.80, breezing at Hollywood Park. “I had her in 1:11 and three or four. She looks like she’s on top of her game right now. She walked yesterday morning for an hour and a half and she walked yesterday afternoon for another hour. We took her to the main track this morning and she jogged a mile (the wrong way).”

Shirreffs said that Zenyatta would “probably van over (to Santa Anita) Thursday afternoon.”

“She worked unbelievable the other day,” said her regular rider, Mike Smith. “I know it sounds funny, but I really think she’s getting better. She seems more and more focused and she couldn’t be doing any better.”