Oaklawn Report #7

3 Stars of the Week:

-1st Star – Comedero (AR) – It was Arkansas bred week at Oaklawn, and the best Arkansas bred running in the states made a big return to the races Saturday.  Comedero, who battled off a serious illness earlier in the year, returned Saturday and dominated the Nodouble Breeders Stakes; winning by three and a half easy lengths.  It was the eleventh win of Comedero’s career, including a perfect four for four at Oaklawn.  I doubt he’ll ever lose one at Oaklawn, plus Comedero has proven he can go up against open company and win as well.  It was great to see him back this Saturday considering how dire his situation was at one point.  Hopefully he’ll make one more appearance this year at Oaklawn before facing open company the rest of the season.

-2nd Star – All About Allie (AR) – Comedero wasn’t the only horse winning back to back races on Saturday!  All About Allie was victorious in the Downthedustyroad Breeders Stakes for the second time in a row.  Explosive Disco hopped out to a five length lead and at one point looked as though she was going to steal the race, but All About Allie ran her down in the stretch run and eased to a three length victory when they hit the wire.  Much like Comedero, All About Allie is all most unbeatable against Arkansas breds, but can also win against open company as well.  Arkansas is lucky to have these two state bred stars carrying their banner throughout the year.

-3rd Star – Agastache (KY) – On paper Thursdays feature, an allowance for older horses going six furlongs, was supposed to be all about Hamazing Destiny, but Agastache obviously didn’t read the Daily Racing Form that morning.  Setting fast early fractions, the old war-horse had every reason to lose, but he wouldn’t let Hamazing Destiny by in the stretch run.  Both horses battled through much of the stretch but in the end it was Agastache who put his nose in front at the wire.  This race was a prep for the Hot Springs Stakes, and with the win Agastache may wind up in that race. Continue reading

Oaklawn Report #6

3 Stars of the Week:

-1st Star – Secret Circle (KY) – His performance in the Southwest was about as professional as you can get.  He rated beautifully in second, just behind Scatman, and was able to wear him down late into the stretch for a half-length victory.  He earned a 102 Beyer for the race, and probably ran the best race of his life up to this point.  There are still distance questions with Secret Circle as far as the Kentucky Derby is concerned, but there is no doubting that this is a very good horse.  I think he’ll get a mile and one-sixteenth with no issues.  Any farther is still a question mark for me.  It needs to be mentioned that second place finisher Scatman showed great promise as he almost held off Secret Circle.  He’s one to keep an eye on.  Also, Adirondack King should like it when the distance gets longer.

-2nd Star –  Castaway (KY) - In terms of his performance this week Castaway was a clear second behind Secret Circle, but if you are looking at the Kentucky Derby picture Castaway could have a better chance to get the distance that Secret Circle.  Castaway is sired by Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense, and it seemed as though he barely had to exert himself to win this race.  Just add his name to the growing list of Baffert Derby contenders.  I look for this one to get better and better as we move forward.

-3rd Star –  Absinthe Minded (KY) - This five-year old mare will get lost in the shuffle from what was an incredible Monday, but Absinthe Minded’s performance on Saturday was eye-catching.  She was clearly the best when in the Bayakoa Stakes, winning by a widening four lengths over a respectable horse in Tiz Miz Sue.  Absinthe Minded is clearly the best older filly on the grounds right now.  The races will get harder from here on out, but she might be better primed than ever to take on the shippers in the Azeri and Apple Blossom. Continue reading

Oaklawn Report #5

3 Stars of the Week:

-1st Star – Amie’s Dini (KY) – The Martha Washington was supposed to be all about Now I Know, but it ended up being all about Amie’s Dini.  The Ron Moquett trained filly stalked Now I Know and flew by her with ease turning for home, winning by two lengths at the end.  It’s pretty obvious that Amie’s Dini likes to go two turns, so I look for her to be a major factor in the Honey Bee and Fantasy Stakes later this year.  She’s now rated as the second best filly at Oaklawn behind On Fire Baby, and she’ll get her shot to take her down next.

-2nd Star – Now I Know (OK) – Even though Now I Know was defeated for the first time in her career, she still ran a pretty good race.  She was collared at the top of the stretch by Aime’s Dini, but still dug in hard to hold on to second while trying to make a run at the leader.  Questions will now come up as to whether six furlongs might be her best distance, but I would think they’ll try her around two turns again in the Honey Bee.

-3rd Star – Our Domain (IL) – The eighth race on Sunday was supposed to be all about Silver Hustler, but it was Our Domain that looked extremely sharp in a relatively easy victory.  The win most likely will propel Our Domain into stakes company next time out.  Much like Aime’s Dini, I think Our Domain will get better as the distances get longer so she might be a dark horse in this loaded three year filly division at Oaklawn. Continue reading