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ARCADIA, CA – Midwestern invader Swiss Skydiver seeks her third consecutive graded stakes victory as she heads a field of 4 sophomore fillies going 1 1/16 miles in Saturday’s $200,000 Santa Anita Oaks (G2).
Based with trainer Ken McPeek at Churchill Downs, Swiss Skydiver’s primary opposition will likely come from Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners’ Speech. Trained by Michael McCarthy, Speech has been second in her last three starts, including the Santa Ysabel Stakes (G3) here two starts back on March 8.
A daughter of 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, Bob Baffert’s Merneith will be stretching out off a 10 1/4-length maiden score at Oaklawn Park and could be good enough to spring an upset.
Additionally, there are 170 Kentucky Oaks (G1) qualifying points at stake, with the winner to receive 100, second 40, third 20 and 10 points to the fourth-place finisher. The Kentucky Oaks will be run at Churchill Downs on Friday, September 4.
The $200,000 Santa Anita Oaks (G2) with jockeys and weights in post position order:
Swiss Skydiver – Mike Smith – 124Merneith – Drayden Van Dyke – 124Speech – Flavien Prat – 124Smiling Shirlee – Ruben Fuentes – 124Regal Beauty – Abel Cedillo – 124
Smiling Shirlee, originally entered to bring the field size to five, is expected to scratch.
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