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Churchill Downs Preview & FREE Picks | Chilukki Stakes 2023: She Can’t Sing Returns For Title Defense
She Can't Sing (Coady Photography)

Churchill Downs Preview & FREE Picks | Chilukki Stakes 2023: She Can’t Sing Returns For Title Defense

Dr. Miranda previews the 2023 Chilukki Stakes (G3) from Churchill Downs, then gives her top picks & long shots.

Last year’s race winner She Can’t Sing returns for a title defense, but will 1 of her 8 rivals entered be able to stop the former champ? Tell us YOUR thoughts in the Comments section!

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The press release:

Lothenbach Stables’ She Can’t Sing will attempt to defend her title on Saturday when she faces eight fillies and mares that entered the 38th running of the $300,000 Chilukki Stakes (Grade III) at Churchill Downs.

The one-mile Chilukki will take place as Race 10 of 11 with a post time of 5:35 p.m. (all times Eastern). First post is 1 p.m.

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Trained by Chris Block, She Can’t Sing is an eight-time winner from 38 starts. The 6-year-old daughter of Bernardini has won four of those races here at Churchill Downs including her 3 ¾-length triumph in last year’s Chilukki.

Block opted to return She Can’t Sing to the turf following her Chilukki victory where she finished fourth in the Tom Benson Memorial at Fair Grounds and third in the Lady Canterbury at Canterbury Park. The Chilukki will be She Can’t Sing’s first start since her fourth-place effort in the Romacaca Handicap in early August at Hawthorne.

Brian Hernandez Jr., who rode She Can’t Sing in last year’s Chilukki, has the return call from post No. 5.

Block also has entered Richard Perkin’s 14-time winner Oeuvre, who’s set to make her first start against graded stakes company. The 4-year-old Illinois-bred is on a three-race win streak with victories in the Jean Elizabeth Handicap at Hawthorne and consecutive allowance wins at Kentucky Downs and Keeneland.

Jockey Jareth Loveberry will be in the irons from post 4.

Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott, a two-time Chilukki winner, aims for his third victory in the race with 2022 Gazelle (GIII) winner Nostalgic. Ridden by Florent Geroux from the rail, Nostalgic finished 10th in the 148th Longines Kentucky Oaks (GI), just ahead of fellow Chilukki rival Hidden Connection who finished 12th.

Nostalgic began her 4-year-old season in mid-July, finishing second to Sixtythreecaliber in a third-level allowance contest. Four weeks later she defeated five rivals in allowance company and would go on to finish third to Randomized and A Mo Reay six weeks later in the Beldame (GII).

Mott previously won the Chilukki with Obligatory (2021) and Feasibility Study (1997).

Here is the complete Chilukki field from the rail out (with jockey and trainer):

  1. Nostalgic (Geroux, Mott);
  2. Raindrops on Roses (Joe Talamo, Pat Huffman);
  3. Hidden Connection (Tyler Gaffalione, Bret Calhoun);
  4. Oeuvre (Loveberry, Block);
  5. She Can’t Sing (Hernandez, Block);
  6. Braganza (Declan Cannon, Eddie Kenneally);
  7. Falconet (Luis Saez, Todd Pletcher);
  8. Be Like Water (Martin Garcia, Vicki Oliver);
  9. Hot and Sultry (Ricardo Santana Jr., Norm Casse)