Running in the otherwise routine sixth race at Laurel Park, the 5-year-old gelding won his 19th straight race. That ties him with two other horses -- Zenyatta and Pepper's Pride -- for the modern North American record for consecutive victories.
Zenyatta ran at the top levels of the sport, losing only in the final race of her career, last year's Breeders' Cup Classic. Pepper's Pride, like Rapid Redux, achieved the unlikely feat outside the limelight, racing in New Mexico.
Rapid Redux was claimed by Baltimore County native Robert Cole at Penn National for $6,250 on Oct. 13, 2010.
He last tasted defeat on Nov. 18, 2010, when he finished eighth and last in at Penn National. He bounced back two weeks later with a victory in an $8,000 claiming event at the same track, starting the victory skein.
Since then, he has run regularly every two or three weeks in Maryland, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.
Thursday, he led all the way and won by 2 3/4 lengths against just four rivals. He completed the 7 furlongs over a muddy track in 1:24.07.
Cole and trainer David Wells last ran him in a claiming race -- anyone could have bought him for $10,000 -- last Dec. 10. In his subsequent 16 wins, he has earned $181,809.
Even though he has been racing closer to the bottom of the class ladder than the top, Rapid Redux is no plow horse. He is by Pleasantly Perfect, out of a Storm Cat mare -- breeding that, if not regal, is certainly solid.
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