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Dr. Miranda previews the 2023 Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) from Gulfstream Park, then gives her top picks & long shots from this major 100-point prep race for the 2023 Kentucky Oaks (G1). Dorth Vader faces a tough 2-turn test following her upset victory in the Davona Dale Stakes (G2) going 1 turn last time out. Will she stretch out or fall apart with the added distance? Tell us YOUR thoughts in the Comments section!
John Ropes’ Dorth Vader, a dominating 4 ¾-length winner of the Davona Dale (G2) Feb. 4, leads a list of the 14 nominations for the $250,000 Gulfstream Park Oaks (G1) presented by FanDuel TV April 1 at Gulfstream Park.
The 1 1/16-mile stakes for 3-year-old fillies, a qualifying race for May 5 Kentucky Oaks (G1), is one of nine stakes on the undercard of the $1 million Curlin Florida Derby (G1) presented by Hill ‘n’ Dale Farms at Xalapa, featuring North America’s top-rated Kentucky Derby (G1) candidate Forte.
The Gulfstream Park Oaks will offer 100 Kentucky Oaks qualifying points with additional points going to the fillies that second (40), third (30), fourth (20) and fifth (10),
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Dorth Vader collected 50 with her stunning victory in the seven-furlong Davona Dale, in which she closely stalked the pace before drawing off to score at 46.70-1. The daughter of Girvin had finished a disappointing sixth in the Gasparilla at Tampa Bay Downs in her prior start. The Michael Yates-trained filly had previously won back-to-back stakes, the Juvenile Fillies for Florida-breds at Gulfstream Park, and the Sandpiper against open company at Tampa.
Dorth Vader will be eligible to share in an additional $100,000 offered by Florida Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners Association to registered Florida-breds, as well as another $100,000 available to Florida Sire Stakes-nominated fillies.
WinStar Farm LLC and Siena Farm LLC’s Miracle, and AMO Racing USA’s Affirmative Lady, both graded stakes-placed fillies, are also among the most prominent nominees for the Gulfstream Park Oaks.
Miracle, a New York-bred daughter of Mendelsohn trained by Hall of Famer Todd Pletcher, set the pace in the Feb. 18 Rachel Alexandra (G2) at Fair Grounds before finishing second, beaten by less than a length.
Affirmative Lady, a daughter of Arrogate trained by Graham Motion, was beaten by just a neck in the Dec. 3 Demoiselle at Aqueduct. In her two starts this year, she finished third in the Busanda Stakes at Aqueduct before graduating by 2 ½ lengths at Gulfstream Feb. 26.
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