The 1994 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies at Churchill Downs came down to a thrilling duel to the wire between stablemates Flanders and Serena’s Song, both trained by D. Wayne Lukas. The amazing fact about this race is that Flanders was able to beat the future Hall of Fame Serena’s Song while suffering severe career-ending injuries: a condylar fracture of the cannon bone and a fractured sesamoid.

Flanders broke her maiden at Saratoga Race Course on August 10, 1994 and then reeled off wins in four straight Grade 1 races—the Spinaway, the Matron, the Frizette, and the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies. However, she was disqualified from the win in the Matron for testing positive for the therapeutic drug isoxuprine.

As Flanders’ owner William T. Young remarked upon her retirement, we will never know how good Flanders would have been. She was already exceptional and certainly as courageous as they come, but she did not run enough races to qualify as great. Hence she is not in the Hall of Fame.

Impeccably bred, by Seeking the Gold and out of the Storm Bird mare Starlet Storm, Flanders gave birth to 13 foals. Eight of them were winners and the best was the 2000 3-year-old filly champion Surfside.

The star-crossed Flanders was euthanized in 2010 after a paddock accident. Her foal, a colt by Bernardini, survived so we may not have heard the last of the brilliant Flanders.

Copyright © 2011 Horse Racing Business

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