Rachel Alexandra has made it back home.
The 2009 Horse of the Year, who has been at Lexington's Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital recovering from abdominal surgery since Feb. 13, has returned to Stonestreet Farm.
"Having Rachel home is a milestone in her recovery," Stonestreet Farm owner Barbara Banke said in a news release Tuesday.
Stonestreet employees decorated Rachel Alexandra's stall with cards from fans as they awaited the arrival of the 7-year-old mare.
Both Stonestreet and Rood and Riddle medical technicians will continue to monitor Rachel Alexandra around the clock. Dr. Bonnie Barr will check her progress with daily visits to the farm.
"This time of transition is a big step, as well as an added stress in her recovery from a very serious, life-threatening condition," Barr said. "We feel, however, that she is ready to take on this challenge, and in doing so, she takes the next step toward getting back to life on the farm."
If things proceed according to plan, Rachel Alexandra will eventually be turned out in a round pen followed by transition to a small paddock over the next couple of weeks.
Rachel Alexandra underwent surgery to repair a section of her small colon that was damaged while delivering a 140-pound Bernardini filly on Feb. 12.
She had a subsequent surgery in early March to drain an abscess adjacent to her reproductive tract and rectum.
Stonestreet previously announced that Rachel Alexandra's filly had been placed with a nurse mare and will not be reunited with her birth mother.
Saratoga 'Walk of Fame'
They're saddling up to celebrate the 150 years of Thoroughbred racing in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., by borrowing a page from Hollywood and establishing a "Hoofprints Walk of Fame."
Local tourism and New York Racing Association officials gathered Tuesday at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame to announce the new project to pay tribute to the most accomplished Thoroughbreds to compete at Saratoga Race Course over the past century and a half.
The Walk of Fame will be installed just outside the clubhouse gates and feature an inaugural class of 30 horses. Each Thoroughbred will be represented by a granite plaque with information on its owner, trainer, jockey and signature wins at Saratoga.
Installation of the plaques will begin this spring and be completed before the track's opening day on July 19.
"I hope future generations will be inspired and humbled to see the hoofprints of some of the greatest athletes that ever lived," said socialite Marylou Whitney, a longtime Thoroughbred owner and breeder who lives in Saratoga.
Modeled after the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where celebrities' stars are embedded in sidewalks, Saratoga's version will include in its first class Triple Crown winners Affirmed, Secretariat, War Admiral and Whirlaway, along with several winners of the Travers Stakes, Saratoga's signature race held each August.