Doing some early campaigning, Laura de Seroux tossed Azeri's hat into the 2002 horse-of-the-year ring. The 4-year-old filly has been beaten once in eight tries this year, and has earned $1.1 million. She would need to hit a Breeders' Cup home run, in only her second start outside California, to even have an outside chance in the year-end voting.
"I think horse of the year implies who's the best all year, and not a horse who's best in just one race," De Seroux said. "What this filly has done, in my mind, is the best performance by any horse over the course of the year. She could have won the only race she lost, if a couple of things had gone differently, and many of her wins were the opposite of hair-pulling performances. She's shown a dominance over her rivals, and I think she should strongly be considered."