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Kentucky Oaks Day 2010 – On The Record | Superfectablog v3.0

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June: Fairy Chant
b. 1937
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Kentucky Oaks Day 2010 - On The Record

Rachel Alexandra, by Jamie Newell

Will Rachel Alexandra be the star of Oaks day again?

We’re only one day away from the Kentucky Oaks – and from Rachel Alexandra returning once more to the scene of her former triumph. One hopes that what little mainstream-ish television coverage there is will replay her historic victory in last year’s Oaks, but for the rest of us, we’ll have to watch her run in the La Troienne on some sort of choppy video from work (or TiVoed on one of the racing channels). She’s back to looking like her old self, as some of the talented photographers on site at Churchill Downs can attest, and it should be great to see her back.

Of course, there’s more going on in between the La Troienne and the Oaks – here is a rundown of the stakes races on Friday:

La Troienne Stakes – 1.26 pm

  1. Be Fair / T J Thompson / 118 / D W Lukas
  2. Morena / J Lezcano / 118 / M R Matz
  3. Zardana / D R Flores / 120 / J A Shirreffs
  4. Rachel Alexandra / C H Borel / 124 / S M Asmussen
  5. Unrivaled Belle / K J Desormeaux / 120 / W I Mott
  6. Distinctive Dixie / J R Leparoux / 118 / W A Dollase

While I look forward to seeing a nearly-fully-fit Rachel Alexandra turn the tables on Zardana, I also hope the Brazilian-bred mare puts in a good effort; I believe she is more talented than some might believe. I may need to use this race to bulk up my Twin Spires account before things kick off in earnest.

Kentucky Juvenile Stakes – 2.10 pm

  1. Saturday Dance / J Graham / 118 / L W Demeritte
  2. Lou Brissie / J R Velazquez / 120 /  N J Howard
  3. Wetzel / R Bejarano / 120 / R E Dutrow, Jr.
  4. Weekend Wildcat/ V Lebron / 118 / W Demeritte
  5. Boys At Tosconova/ K J Desormeaux / 118 / R B Hess, Jr.
  6. Final Mesa (f)  / J Rosario / 117 / W A Ward
  7. Nina Fever (f)  / R Albarado / 117 /  W A Ward
  8. The Freak / A Jimenez / 118 / W R Helmbrecht
  9. Twelve Pack Shelly (f) / H Vega / 117 / J E Salzman

They’re only 2-year-olds, it’s a mix of colts and fillies, and there isn’t much to go on yet. Wesley Ward went 1-2 with his fillies last year, then took one to Royal Ascot for a big win. With that in mine, I’ll be keeping an eye on his filly, Nina Fever, but I suspect that Wetzel will win.

Churchill Downs Turf Sprint – 3.04 pm

  1. Moralist /  B Meier / 118 / T Domenosky
  2. Perfect Officer / K J Desormeaux / 118 / Weaver
  3. Chamberlain Bridge /  J Theriot / 118 / W B Calhoun
  4. Heavenly Chorus/  S Bridgmohan / 118 / S M Asmussen
  5. Mitigation / A Garcia / 118 /  M J Maker
  6. Silver Timber / J R Leparoux / 124 /  C C Brown
  7. Starfish Bay / J R Velazquez / 116 / T A Pletcher
  8. Barge / G K Gomez / 118 /  T A Pletcher
  9. Formidable /  J Lezcano / 118 / H A Jerkens
  10. Central City / R Albarado / 118 / R W Werner
  11. Lit’sgoodlookngray / J Talamo / 118 / R B Hess, Jr.

Chamberlain Bridge won this race last year, and is looking to defend his title. I like both Silver Timber and Starfish Bay, but think Silver Timber may have the edge.

Alysheba Stakes – 3.54 pm

  1. Chocolate Candy / R Bejarano / 118 /J Hollendorfer
  2. Friesan Fire /  S Bridgmohan / 118 /  S M Asmussen
  3. Macho Again / R Albarado / 118 /  D Stewart
  4. Cool Coal Man / J Lezcano / 118 / N P Zito
  5. Prom Shoes /  C H Borel / 118 /  W H Fires
  6. Bullsbay / J Rose / 118 / H G Motion
  7. Arson Squad / P Lopez / 122 / R E Dutrow, Jr.
  8. Flying Private /  T J Thompson / 118 /  D W Lukas
  9. Enriched /  J Rosario / 118 /  D F O’Neill

It’s old home week for many in this field - Chocolate Candy, Friesan Fire and Flying Private all contested last year’s Derby, Cool Coal Man tried the year before, and Macho Again, Arson Squad, Prom Shoes and Bullsbay have raced here before in fairly major races. Bullsbay is aiming to defend his Alysheba title, and I’m picking him to repeat, although I expect good races from most of the field, especially Friesan Fire, Macho Again, Arson Squad and Chocolate Candy.  That cleared that up, right?

American Turf Stakes – 4.47 pm

  1. Setsuko / R Bejarano / 117 / R E Mandella
  2. Alfarabi / C S Nakatani / 117 / E G Harty
  3. Guys Reward / J Lezcano / 117 / D L Romans
  4. Lost Aptitude/ K J Desormeaux / 119 / D L Romans
  5. Strike the Tiger / J R Velazquez / 117 / W A Ward
  6. Doubles Partner / G K Gomez / 117 /T A Pletcher
  7. Asphalt / J R Leparoux / 117 / E Kenneally
  8. Saint Eligius /  A Garcia / 117 / K P McLaughlin
  9. Gleam of Hope / R Albarado / 119 / A L Reinstedler
  10. Make Music for Me / J Rosario / 117 / A Barba
  11. Workin for Hops / B J Hernandez, Jr. / 117/ M Stidham

Make Music for Me made the Derby field, but Setsuko did not, so he’s sticking to this race. I’m not entirely convinced by him, however, and as I grow hops in my back yard (some Cascades, Willamette, Centennial and Fuggles, if you were wondering), how can I not pick a horse like Workin for Hops, who also happens to have two wins on turf? I also like Asphalt, though, and Saint Eligius (even if his name puts the St. Elsewhere theme music forever in my head). However, Strike the Tiger was another of Wesley Ward’s winners at Royal Ascot last year – and I like his odds.  While I was initially going with Asphalt, I’ve switched my loyalties to Strike the Tiger.

Kentucky Oaks – 5.45 PM

  1. It’s Tea Time / A Garcia / 121 / G R Arnold, II
  2. Jody Slew / M Mena / 121 / W B Calhoun
  3. Quiet Temper / R Albarado / 121 /  D L Romans
  4. Age of Humor/ R Maragh / 121 / M J Maker
  5. Blind Luck / R Bejarano / 121 / J Hollendorfer
  6. Beautician/ A O Solis / 121 / K G McPeek
  7. Crisp/ J Rosario / 121 / J W Sadler
  8. Tidal Pool / C H Borel / 121 / D W Lukas
  9. Bella Diamante / M E Smith / 121 / A Milligan
  10. Champagne d’Oro /  M Garcia / 121 / E J Guillot
  11. Evening Jewel / K J Desormeaux / 121 / J M Cassidy
  12. Ailalea / J R Velazquez / 121 / T A Pletcher
  13. Amen Hallelujah / J R Leparoux / 121 / R E Dutrow, Jr.
  14. Joanie’s Catch / P Lopez / 121 / B R Rose

Finally, the big race – hopefully I’ll actually be home in time to watch it. I’ve really liked Blind Luck all along, and am picking her to win. But it’s a big field, and there is considerable talent in the form of Amen Hallelujah and Crisp. Beautician is my long-ish shot, although I expect her odds may drift down before the race – but I’m backing Blind Luck all the way.

Here’s hoping for a safe and exciting Kentucky Oaks day – welcome back, Rachel Alexandra!  Check out more Oaks action and history over at Hello Race Fans, follow us on Twitter (@superfecta), and come back tomorrow for our annual dubious Derby picks.

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