The Malibu Stakes (G1) always signals the start of the new racing season at Santa Anita Park, but Saturday’s edition marked a major return from a potential superstar and highlighted a great overall weekend at The Great Race Place. Here’s who made our Three Stars of the Week:
Off since crossing first in May’s Arkansas Derby (G1), Charlatan showed a new ability to sit behind the early pace and take over in the stretch. Now officially a Grade 1 winner (unless he fails another drug test, like he did in the Arkansas Derby), he’s reportedly heading to either the Pegasus World Cup (G1) or the $20 million Saudi Cup.
Trainer Chad Brown doesn’t ship horses for the airline miles, so when he sent 2 to Saturday’s American Oaks (G1), you knew he meant business. Duopoly looked like lone speed on paper and top local jockey Flavien Prat put her on the front end, where she remained throughout to win. No surprise to anyone, Brown has a top-tier turf filly heading into 2021.
3. Fair Maiden
After most of the La Brea Stakes (G1) field hustled up front early, Fair Maiden proved to have the right idea, waiting until the far turn to make a sweeping move to the front. The Godolphin homebred stormed home for an impressive upset at 20/1 and stamped herself as a top-tier threat in next year’s female dirt sprint division.