Las Vegas, NV - The Grade 3 Gulfstream Park Oaks is on tap for this Saturday, March 28 from Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida. Three year old fillies will be featured when they go 1 1/16 miles on Gulfstream's dirt track searching for the winner's portion of the $250,000 purse in a race that awards 100-40-20-10 qualifying points toward the Kentucky Oaks May 1.
A field of eight three year old fillies will take part in the Gulfstream Park Oaks - race 12 on Gulfstream's busy Saturday schedule. Post time is 5:35 PM. Let's take a look into the credentials of all eight entries for this intriguing Grade 2 stakes.
Ekati's Phaeton - William Kaplan trainee has won two of her last three starts overall - the Grade 2 Davona Dale at 26-1 odds last time out on this track and the Grade 3 Old Hat Stakes here with a fourth in the Grade 2 Forward Gal Stakes on this track sandwiched in there. She also had a close second in the minor House Party Stakes at Gulfstream Park West November 29, a sixth in the minor Our Dear Peggy Stakes on grass in October and consecutive wins - a MSW and an incredible 10 1/4 length Allowance score with a terrific 90 Beyer Speed Figure on this track this past summer. She now has four wins (all on this track) and a second place finish in seven career starts and has looked very good lately. Luis Saez gets the call from post 3 in Ekati's Phaeton's first try around two turns on dirt.
Birdatthewire - 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 on this track for trainer Dale Romans and followed that with a decent second behind Ekati's Phaeton in the Grade 2 Davona Dale Stakes here February 21. She finally broke maiden before that in her fourth career start - at Churchill Downs November 29 after a fourth and had a second and a third respectively in MSW races to start her career. Birdatthewire has two wins and a second place finish in her last three starts looks to keep her upward trend going from gate 8 with Corey Lanerie guiding her.
Eskenformoney - Todd Pletcher trained filly has eight career starts with two wins, two seconds and a third place finish. She enters off an OK third - a neck behind Birdatthewire in the Grade 2 Davona Dale Stakes on this track February 21 after 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 - both on this track. Eskenformoney has placed in four straight races ahead of this weekend and hopes to record her first graded stakes score - from gate 6 with Javier Castellano aboard.
Devine Aida - Ramon Morales trained filly enters having won four straight starts after finishing second in her debut. The current streak has been impressive with the best coming last time out - the Herecomesthibride Stakes here February 28 which followed the minor Ginger Brew Stakes on this very track January 3. Devine Aida tries to make it five straight wins Saturday from the rail with Jesus Rios in the saddle from gate 4.
Christina's Journey - Dale Romans trained filly started her career with two good wins -in the Grade 2 Pocahontas Stakes in gate-to-wire fashion at Churchill Downs September 6 after an impressive maiden score at first asking. She has struggled in two starts since - an eleventh in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies was followed by a seventh last time out in the Grade 2 Golden Rod Stakes at Churchill Downs November 29. Christina's Journey makes her first start of 2015 hoping to rediscover her early career form - from post 5 with Corey Lanerie in the saddle.
Danessa Deluxe - has two wins and two seconds in five career starts for trainer Jorge Navarro and was last seen running fourth in the Grade 3 Delta Downs Princess Stakes November 22. Before that was a two race win streak - an Allowance Optional Claiming by 5 1/4 lengths at Gulfstream Park West October 29 and a maiden score October 3. She has been OK in her career but looks for a stakes breakthrough Saturday from post 7 with legendary jockey John Velazquez in the saddle.
Holywell - Jose Pinchin trained multiple stakes winning filly has eight career starts with three wins and two third place finishes - Saturday marks her graded stakes debut. She won the minor Florida Sire Susan's Girl Stakes and the Florida Sire My Dear Girl Stakes in the fall but has placed in just one of three starts since. Last time out was a seventh in the minor Suncoast Stakes at Tampa Bay January 31 - her worst career results after a third in the minor Hut Hut Stakes November 29 and a fourth in the minor Juvenile Filly Sprint Stakes at Gulfstream Park West November 8. Holywell has shown good form in the past and hopes to return to her fall/2014 form when she leaves from the rail with Gabriel Saez aboard.
Sweet Swingin - Dale Romans pupil started her career with two off-the-board finishes but has placed in all three starts this year - a respectable second behind Devine Aida last time out in the Herecomesthebride Stakes here February 28 followed a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming February 8 and a maiden score January 10 - all on this track. She has certainly been trending upward and looks to keep the roll going Saturday. Jose Ortiz rides from post 2.