Friday, March 20, 2009
Kentucky Oaks 135 Update 3.20.09
SOUTH/RACHEL ALEXANDRA LIKELY TO POINT TO FANTASY
L & M Racing’s Rachel Alexandra, a romping winner in last week’s Fair Grounds Oaks (Grade II), is likely to make the $250,000 Fantasy Stakes (GII) at Oaklawn Park her final prep for the $500,000-added Kentucky Oaks (GI).
Trainer Hal Wiggins sais his options for the daughter of Medaglia d’Oro are to train Rachel Alexandra up to the 1 1/8-mile Oaks at Churchill Downs on May 1 or run in the race at Oaklawn Park on April 5.
Rachel Alexandra has won three consecutive stakes races, a string that started with a romp in last fall’s Golden Rod (GII) at Churchill Downs. She opened her 3-year-old season with an easy victory in the Martha Washington at Oaklawn, followed by last week’s win in the Fair Grounds Oaks.
Wiggins’ filly has won two of four career races at Churchill Downs.
MIDWEST/FITZ JUST RIGHT FAVORED IN TURFWAY’S BOURBONETTE
West Point Thoroughbreds’ Fitz Just Right will be looking to establish credentials as a contender for the Kentucky Oaks when she takes on nine rivals in Saturday’s $150,000 Bourbonette Stakes (GIII) at Turfway Park,
The daughter of Seattle Fitz is coming off a victory in the $100,000 OBS Championships at Florida’s Ocala Training Center, which was her third win in four career starts. She set a stakes record of 1:42.20 for 1 1/16 miles over the training center’s synthetic Polytrack surface. She will be running on Polytrack again in the Turfway and will be ridden by Cornelio Velasquez.
Major rivals to Fitz Just Right are expected to include Walloon, the winner of the Valdale Stakes at Turfway and Step Out Smartly, the winner of Turfway’s Gowell Stakes in December.
Fitz Just Right is seeking her first graded stakes win in the Bourbonette.
The Bourbonette has produced one winner of the Kentucky Oaks. Lemons Forever finished third in the race in 2005 before she scored the biggest upset in Oaks history with a 47-1 victory in the big race at Churchill Downs.
SOUTH/HENNIG MULLS OPTIONS FOR DON’T FORGET GIL
After an emphatic victory by Don’t Forget Gil in last week’s Florida Oaks (GIII) at Tampa Bay Downs, trainer Mark Hennig is mulling over future options for the 3-year-old daughter of Kafwain.
The New York-bred filly had encountered trouble in a third-place finish her previous start in the Suncoast at Tampa Bay Downs, but had clear sailing last weekend. She dominated Rocky Candy and Ameribelle, two fillies that had finished in front of her in the Suncoast.
“She was a pretty hyped filly early on, but she's just now getting the idea of what she's doing out there,” Hennig told Daily Racing Form. “She had all kinds of problems in her previous start at Tampa, but came out of that race wanting more action, and she really showed it on Saturday.”
Hennig said he was not sure what Don’t Forge Gil’s next start would be.
Read more articles in the Churchill Downs category.