Rapid Redux is now the sole modern-day record holder of consecutive wins by a North American Thoroughbred
. He achieved that status via a front-running, four-length score in a one-mile starter allowance event on a muddy track on Monday night at Mountaineer Casino Racetrack & Resort.
Ridden by DeShawn Parker, Rapid Redux was somewhat reluctant to enter the starting gate, but wasn’t reluctant to leave it. “He’s always like that,” Parker said. “After the first couple of strides, Rapid Redux knew exactly what to do. I can’t tell you how great a feeling it is to ride a great horse like this.”
It was a wire-to-wire effort by the five-year-old gelded son of Pleasantly Perfect, who registered fractions of :24.70 for the opening quarter, :48.84 for the half and 1:13.38 for three-quarters.
Final time of the race was 1:40.04. “Our eligibility for starter allowances runs out (at midnight) on December 31,” said trainer David Wells. “I can tell you right now that we’re looking to make a few more starts with him this year. This is terrific.”
For the 40-year-old Parker, it was career win number 3,864, and he will never forget the horse he was aboard when doing it. For the 47-year-old Wells, it was a triumph that occurred in the area where he was born and raised – West Virginia’s upper panhandle.
And for Rapid Redux’s owner, 48-year-old Robert Cole Jr. of Maryland, it was “absolutely phenomenal. What else can I say? Rapid Redux’s durability is incredible. And DeShawn did exactly what he was supposed to do – which is let him run his race.”
The race originally drew 11 horses, but scratches brought the number down to eight by Saturday and to four by Monday’s slightly-delayed 10:07 p.m. post. Among the defectors were the 8-to-1 second choice in the morning line, Copper Forest; and the 12-to-1 third choice in the line, Disco Andy. Rapid Redux returned $2.20 to win and $2.20 to place.
There was no show wagering. A total of $23,866 was wagered in the win pool, and $276,175 in the show pool.
Rapid Redux has thus exceeded the plateau of 19 consecutive wins that he shared with Peppers Pride and Zenyatta. Peppers Pride and Zenyatta are retired. That’s not the case with Rapid Redux. Wells and Cole have pre-entered him in the $50,000 Iron Horse Stakes, a 1 1/16-mile event which is part of the Claiming Crown program at Fair Grounds in New Orleans on December 3.
The Iron Horse is for three-year-olds and up who have run for claiming tags of $7,500 or less during the past two years. It would seem to be a good fit for Rapid Redux, and a win would gain him his most lucrative paycheck to date. But the Fair Grounds stretch is one of the longest in North America – 1,346 feet (as opposed to the 905-foot stretch at Mountaineer). Fair Grounds doesn’t favor front runners, especially in two-turn races.