On the racetrack, few females have had the same impact as Azeri, who was voted champion older mare from 2002-04, and became just the third filly to be named Horse of the Year in 2002. In a four-year career, Azeri won 17 of 24 races, with four seconds and more than $4 million in purse earnings. Eleven of her victories came in Grade 1 stakes, none bigger than her wire-to-wire, five-length victory in the 2002 Breeders’ Cup Distaff at Arlington Park.
Bred and owned by aerospace magnate Allen Paulson, who died before ever seeing his champion race, Azeri was named for an aviation checkpoint in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan. Between March 2002 and August 2003, Azeri won 11 consecutive races, all in graded stakes, eight of them Grade 1. The highest-earning female in history when retired in 2004, she was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2010.