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Las Vegas, NV - Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky will be the center of the horse racing world this weekend as some of the best three year olds on the planet converge to contest the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks. The Oaks will be contested Friday, May 1 and features three year old fillies as they go 1 1/8 miles on Churchill Downs main track for a purse of $1 million.
A stellar field of 14 three year old fillies plus one Alternate Entry will take to the track in the Kentucky Oaks - race 11 on Churchill Downs packed Friday Oaks Day card. Post time is 5:49 PM. Here is a look into the past performances of all 15 possible combatants for this intriguing Grade 1 stakes.
Stellar Wind 7-2 - John Sadler pupil broke maiden in her second career start December 18 by an impressive 8 3/4 lengths after a second in her debut - both results at Laurel Park. Last time out she continued an impressive run with a terrific win in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Oaks April 4 which followed an upset 2 3/4 length win in the Santa Ysabel Stakes at 7-1 odds track February 28. Although still lightly raced Stellar Wind has been superb against some terrific competition so far. Victor Espinoza has been tabbed with keeping the incredible roll trend going for the morning line favorite from post 12.
Condo Commando 4-1 - has six career starts for trainer Rudy Rodriguez with five impressive wins. She debuted with a Maiden Claiming score August 3 and followed that with an impressive win in the Grade 1 Spinaway Stakes at Saratoga August 31 - those two wins coming by a combined 25 1/2 lengths. She stumbled to a fourth as favorite in the Grade 1 Frizette Stakes at Belmont Park October 4 but has since reeled off three straight wins. Last time out was a win in the Grade 2 Gazelle Stakes at Aqueduct April 4 which followed wins in the minor Busher Stakes in February and a win in the Grade 2 Demoiselle Stakes - all results at Aqueduct. She has been very competitive so far and is expected to be again Friday. Joel Rosario has the call aboard the intriguing 4-1 second choice from post 5.
I'm a Chatterbox - Larry Jones trained filly has four wins and a third place finish in six career starts. She enters on the heels of a three race win streak- the Grade 2 Fair Grounds Oaks March 28, the Grade 3 Rachel Alexandra Stakes February 21 and the minor Silverbulletday Stakes in January - all results at Fair Grounds. She is undefeated this year - impressive indeed and is expected to challenge Friday. Florent Geroux gets the call aboard the 4-1 morning line co-second choice from gate 8.
Lovely Maria 5-1 - Larry Jones trained filly has three wins and three second place finishes in six career starts. She enters off a nice win in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes at Keeneland April 4 which followed a good second behind stablemate I'm a Chatterbox in her graded stakes debut - the Grade 3 Rachel Alexandra Stakes at Fair Grounds February 21, an Allowance Optional Claiming score in wire-to-wire fashion January 25 and a fourth in the minor Trapeze Stakes in December. Lovely Maria has certainly been trending upward and hopes to keep the roll going Friday with Kerwin Clark aboard from post 7 as the 5-1 fourth choice.
Birdatthewire 6-1 - made her stakes debut January 24 one to remember - a win over Ekati's Phaeton among others - by 3 1/4 lengths in the Grade 2 Forward Gal Stakes for trainer Dale Romans and followed that with a decent second behind Ekati's Phaeton in the Grade 2 Davona Dale Stakes February 21 and a good win last time out in the Grade 2 Gulfstream Park Oaks March 28. That makes three wins and a second place finish in her last four starts for Birdatthewire. She looks to keep her upward trend going from post 13 with Irad Ortiz guiding her.
Forever Unbridled 15-1 - Dallas Stewart trained filly has just one win in five career starts but has placed in all five. She enters off consecutive third place finishes - the Grade 2 Fair Grounds Oaks March 28 and the Grade 3 Rachel Alexandra Stakes in February to go along with a second place finish in the minor Silverbulletday Stakes in January. She has been competitive every time out but has yet to break through in stakes company. Mike Smith picks up the mount from the rail Friday hoping to change that.
Angela Renee 15/1 - Grade 1 winning Todd Pletcher trained filly has eight career starts with two wins, two seconds and two third place finishes. Last time out was a good second behind Lovely Maria in the Grade 1 Ashland at Keeneland April 4 after a fourth in the Grade 3 Rachel Alexandra Stakes at Fair Grounds February 21 and a third in the Grade 2 Demoiselle Stakes at Aqueduct in November. She also had a disappointing tenth as favorite in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, a terrific win in the Grade 1 Chandelier Stakes at Santa Anita in September, a third in the Grade 1 Spinaway Stakes at Saratoga August 31 and a second in the Grade 2 Adirondack Stakes also at Saratoga August 10. She has raced six straight graded stakes races with mixed results and hopes to snap a four race losing streak Saturday. Angela Renee will leave from gate 6 with John Velazquez aboard.
Puca 15-1 - Bill Mott pupil finally broke maiden by an astounding 16 lengths at Belmont Park October 1 in her third career start and has been up and down since. Last time out was a respectable second in the Grade 2 Gazelle Stakes at Aqueduct April 4 which followed a fourth in the Grade 2 Davona Dale Stakes in February and a sixth in her step into stakes action - the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. She has placed in just one of her last three starts overall and looks to break through in stakes company for the first time from the far outside post with Junior Alvarado aboard.
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Eskenformoney 20-1 - Todd Pletcher trained filly has nine career starts with two wins, three seconds and a third place finish. She enters off a decent second in the Grade 2 Gulfstream Park Oaks March 28 which followed an OK third - a neck behind Birdatthewire in the Grade 2 Davona Dale Stakes February 21 and a tidy two race wins streak - an Allowance Optional Claiming by 3 3/4 lengths January 16 and a maiden score December 16 by 9 3/4 lengths in her sixth career start. Eskenformoney has placed in five straight races ahead of this weekend and hopes to record her first graded stakes score - from gate 4 with Javier Castellano aboard.
Include Betty 20-1 - Tom Proctor trained filly has seven career starts with three wins, a second and a third place finish and enters this week having won three of her last four races - the minor Suncoast Stakes January 31, a maiden score January 3 in her fourth career start and a nice win in the Grade 3 Fantasy Stakes at Oaklawn Park April 4. She also had a fifth in the Grade 3 Florida Oaks sandwiched in there. She makes her first Grade 1 start in good form off a win in her only stakes action to date and will have Rosemary Homeister guiding her from post 3.
Shook Up 30-1 - has a win and three second place finishes in five career starts for trainer Steve Asmussen. Last time out was her career best performance - a second place finish in the Grade 2 Fair Grounds Oaks which followed a fifth in the Grade 3 Rachel Alexandra Stakes February 21, a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming January 26 and a maiden score January 3 in her second career start. She has been OK but looks to be in deep in this one. Robby Albarado gets the call from gate 2.
Oceanwave 30-1 - has placed in all five career starts for trainer Wayne Catalano - two wins, two seconds and a third place finish. She enters off a pair of runner-up finishes - the Grade 3 Fantasy Stakes April 4 and the Grade 3 Honeybee Stakes March 7 - both at Oaklawn Park. Before that were two wins - an Allowance Optional Claiming January 22 and a maiden score in her second career start - at Keeneland October 19. She has been competitive so far but steps in against the best field she's been up against so far. Rafael Bejarano will be in the saddle from post 10.
Sarah Sis 30-1 - won the Grade 3 Honeybee Stakes at Oaklawn Park March 7 but stumbled to a fifth last time out in the Grade 3 Fantasy Stakes - both at Oaklawn Park. Before that was a pair of runner-up finishes in minor stakes action- the Martha Washington Stakes and the Dixie Belle Stakes both in January. She like Oceanwave will face the best competition of her life and enters in so-so form. The legendary Gary Stevens gets the call from post 11.
Money'soncharlotte 50-1 - Kelly Breen trained filly won her stakes debut - the minor Hut Hut Stakes at Gulfstream Park West November 29 and has been OK since. Last time out was a third in the Grade 2 Gazelle Stakes at Aqueduct April 4 after an ugly tenth in the Grade 2 Davona Dale Stakes February 21 and a third in the minor Silverbulletday Stakes January 17. Money'soncharlotte will go against the best competition of her life is OK form as the longest shot in the field with Paco Lopez in the irons from post 9.
Peace and War - Also Eligible entry made her North American debut October 3 on this track and made quite a statement - a win at 23-1 odds in the Grade 1 Darley Alcibiades Stakes but followed that with a seventh last time out in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes April 4. Before that she had three starts in Britain which yielded a win and a second place finish. She was supposed to run in November but was forced to miss the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies because of injury but may start this big race with Julien Leparoux scheduled to ride.
Race 11 on Churchill Downs's Friday card with a Post Time of 5:49 PM.
|1||Forever Unbridled||M. Smith||D. Stewart|
|2||Shook Up||R. Albarado||S. Asmussen|
|3||Include Betty||R. Homeister, Jr.||T. Proctor|
|4||Eskenformoney||J. Castellano||T. Pletcher|
|5||Condo Commando||J. Rosario||R. Rodriguez|
|6||Angela Renee||J. Velazquez||T. Pletcher|
|7||Lovely Maria||K. Clark||J. Jones|
|8||I'm a Chatterbox||F. Geroux||J. Jones|
|9||Money'soncharlotte||P. Lopez||K. Breen|
|10||Oceanwave||R. Bejarano||W. Catalano|
|11||Sarah Sis||G. Stevens||I. Mason|
|12||Stellar Wind||V. Espinoza||J. Sadler|
|13||Birdatthewire||I. Ortiz, Jr.||D. Romans|
|14||Puca||J. Alvarado||W. Mott|
|15||Peace and War||J. Leparoux||O. Stevens|
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