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Thunder Snow Makes First Visit to Churchill Downs, Kentucky Oaks Update

Thunder Snow Makes First Visit to Churchill Downs, Kentucky Oaks Update

LOUISVILLE, KY – Godolphin Racing’s Thunder Snow exited quarantine on Tuesday morning and made his first visit to the main track at Churchill Downs during the special training period reserved for Kentucky Derby and Oaks horses. Thunder Snow jogged 1 mile and cantered 1 mile.

Later that same morning, 14 fillies were officially entered for Friday’s $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks, with Steven Sarkowsky and Pam and Marty Wygod’s Paradise Woods the 5-2 morning-line favorite. The complete Kentucky Oaks undercard was also released.


The field for the Longines Kentucky Oaks, from the rail out with jockey and morning-line odds, is as follows:

1. Ever So Clever (Luis Contreras, 20-1)
2. Lockdown (Jose Ortiz, 20-1)
3. Mopotism (Mario Gutierrez, 20-1)
4. Paradise Woods (Flavien Prat, 5-2)
5. Jordan’s Henny (Joe Rocco, 30-1)
6. Vexatious (Kent Desormeaux, 20-1)
7. Farrell (Channing Hill, 5-1)
8. Sailor’s Valentine (Corey Lanerie, 30-1)
9. Wicked Lick (Brian Hernandez Jr., 30-1)
10. Miss Sky Warrior (Paco Lopez, 9-2)
11. Tequilita (Luis Saez, 20-1)
12. Daddys Lil Darling (Julien Leparoux, 20-1)
13. Abel Tasman (Mike Smith, 5-1)
14. Salty (Joel Rosario, 6-1)
Also-Eligible: Summer Luck (Javier Castellano, 30-1).

All starters will carry 121 pounds. Look for the official Racing Dudes preview on Thursday.

Kentucky Derby Wagering Guide


Seltzer Thoroughbreds’ Finest City, winner of last fall’s Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, headlines a field of nine entered Tuesday for the 32nd running of the Grade 1, $300,000 La Troienne Presented by Spirit Funds for fillies and mares going 1 1/16 miles on the main track.

Other stakes on the Friday program include: the 14th running of the Grade 2, $400,000 Alysheba for 4-year-olds and up going 1 1/16 miles on the main track; the 62nd running of the Grade 2, $200,000 Eight Belles for 3-year-old fillies going seven furlongs on the main track; the 23rd running of the Grade 3, $150,000 Twin Spires Turf Sprint for 3-year-olds and up going five furlongs; and the 33rd running of the $150,000 Edgewood Presented by Forcht Bank for 3-year-old fillies going 1 1/16 miles on the turf.


Trained by Ian Kruljac, Finest City followed up her Breeders’ Cup victory with a triumph in the Grade 2 Santa Monica. In her most recent start, she finished second to the top mare Vale Dori in the Grade 1 Santa Margarita. All three races were contested at Santa Anita.

Mike Smith, aboard for the Breeders’ Cup and Santa Monica victories, has the mount Friday and will break from post position eight.

The field for the La Troienne, from the rail out with rider and weight, is as follows:

1. Eskenformoney (Javier Castellano, 118 pounds)
2. Impasse (Geovanni Franco, 118)
3. Big World (Florent Geroux, 118)
4. Paid Up Subscriber (Joel Rosario, 118)
5. Romantic Vision (Brian Hernandez Jr., 118)
6. Streamline (Chris Landeros, 120)
7. Factory of Faith (Jose Ortiz, 118)
8. Finest City (Smith, 118)
9. Go Maggie Go (Luis Saez, 118)

The La Troienne goes as the fifth race on Friday’s 13-race program. Post time for the La Troienne is 12:35 p.m., with the day’s first post at 10:30 a.m.


Gary and Mary West’s American Freedom, unraced since finishing second to Arrogate in last August’s Grade 1 Travers, will make his return to the races in the Alysheba when he faces 10 rivals.

Trained by Bob Baffert, American Freedom finished second to Exaggerator in the Grade 1 Haskell Invitational prior to the Travers. In his lone Churchill Downs effort, American Freedom finished sixth in the Grade 3 Pat Day Mile on Derby Day last year. Rafael Bejarano has the mount on American Freedom and will break from post position nine.

Other top contenders include the 1-2 finishers from the April 1st Grade 2 New Orleans Handicap in DARRS Inc.’s Honorable Duty and Gunpowder Farms and West Point Thoroughbreds’ Breaking Lucky.

The field for the Alysheba, from the rail out with rider and weight, is as follows:

1. Bird Song (Julien Leparoux, 118 pounds)
2. Breaking Lucky (Javier Castellano, 118)
3. El Huerfano (Paco Lopez, 118)
4. Honorable Duty (James Graham, 120)
5. December Seven (Corey Lanerie, 118)
6. International Star (Jose Ortiz, 118)
7. Flashy Jewel (Joe Bravo, 118)
8. Noble Bird (Joel Rosario, 118)
9. American Freedom (Bejarano, 118)
10. Behesht (Joe Rocco Jr., 118)
11. Fish Trappe Road (Luis Saez, 118)

The Alysheba will go as the afternoon’s sixth with a 1:17 p.m. post time.


Sumaya U.S. Stable’s undefeated Ghalia, winner of the Sunland Park Oaks on March 26 in her most recent start, headlines a field of 14 fillies entered in the Eight Belles.

Trained by Todd Pletcher, Ghalia won her first two starts at Gulfstream Park before making a successful stakes debut at Sunland Park. John Velazquez has the mount on Ghalia, who will break from post position 10.

Two Grade 1 winners, Pretty City Dancer and Union Strike, will challenge Ghalia.

John Oxley’s Pretty City Dancer dead-heated for the win in the Spinaway last September at Saratoga. In her most recent start, she finished sixth in the Ashland at Keeneland. Trained by Mark Casse, Pretty City Dancer will break from post position four and be ridden by Julien Leparoux.

Ruis Racing’s Union Strike, winner of the Del Mar Debutante last September, enters the Eight Belles off of a victory in the Santa Paula at Santa Anita on April 9. Trained by Mick Ruis, Union Strike will be ridden by Brice Blanc and break from post position two.

The field for the Eight Belles, from the rail out with rider and weight, is as follows:

1. Benner Island (Javier Castellano, 118 pounds)
2. Union Strike (Blanc, 118)
3. Lovely Bernadette (Brian Hernandez Jr., 118)
4. Pretty City Dancer (Leparoux, 118)
5. Gris Gris (Mike Smith, 118)
6. Laney (Corey Lanerie, 118)
7. Golden Mischief (Jose Ortiz, 120)
8. I’mluckysgirl (Miguel Mena, 118)
9. Florida Fabulous (Paco Lopez, 118)
10. Ghalia (Velazquez, 120)
11. Let It Ride Mom (Joel Rosario, 118)
12. China Grove (James Graham, 118)
13. What What What (Flavien Prat, 118)
14. Cajun Delta Dawn (Juan Leyva, 118)

The Eight Belles will go as the afternoon’s eighth race with a 2:53 p.m. post time.

Kentucky Derby Bonus: Access our Top 10 Kentucky Derby Wagering Mistakes for a step-by-step guide on how we’ve hit three straight Kentucky Derby winners.


Holding Gold and Green Mask, the 1-2 finishers in last month’s Grade 2 Shakertown at Keeneland, head a field of 13 for the Twin Spires Turf Sprint.

Owned by the Live Oak Plantation and trained by Mark Casse, Holding Gold came off a six-month layoff to win the Shakertown by a neck over Green Mask. Joel Rosario has the mount on Holding Gold and will break from post position three.

Abdullah Saeed Almaddah’s Green Mask is a multiple graded stakes-placed runner now in the barn of Brad Cox. Winner of the Bonapaw at Fair Grounds three starts back, Green Mask will break from post position 12 and be ridden by Javier Castellano.

The field for the Twin Spires Turf Sprint, from the inside with rider and weight, is as follows:

1. Wilbo (Joe Bravo, 120 pounds)
2. Platinum Prince (Joe Rocco, Jr., 120)
3. Holding Gold (Rosario, 125)
4. Why Two (Flavien Prat, 120)
5. Maniacal (David Flores, 120)
6. Expected Ruler (Didiel Osorio, 120)
7. Derek’s Smile (Paco Lopez, 117)
8. Pure Sensation (Jose Ortiz, 120)
9. Partly Mocha (Julien Leparoux, 122)
10. Black Bear (Calvin Borel, 120)
11. Latent Revenge (Rafael Bejarano, 120)
12. Green Mask (Castellano, 120)
13. Tell All You Know (Corey Lanerie, 120)

The Twin Spires Turf Sprint will go as the afternoon’s seventh race with a 2 p.m. post time.


La Coronel and Dream Dancing headline a field of 13 3-year-old fillies for the Edgewood.

Trained by Mark Casse and to be ridden by Julien Leparoux, La Coronel was a daylight winner of the Grade 3 Appalachian at Keeneland in her most recent start. She won the Grade 3 Jessamine last fall at Keeneland and was the favorite in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf in which she finished sixth.

Dream Dancing, winner of the Grade 3 Herecomesthebride at Gulfstream Park in March and most recently a fast-closing fourth in the Appalachian, is also trained by Casse, who won the Edgewood last year with Catch a Glimpse.

Dream Dancing has won three of her five career starts on grass. Leparoux also is named on Dream Dancing and will break from post position nine.

The field for the Edgewood, from the inside with rider and weight, is as follows:

1. Bernadiva (Javier Castellano, 118 pounds)
2. Youngest Daughter (Jose Lezcano, 118)
3. India Mantuana (Jose Ortiz, 118)
4. Journey Home (John Velazquez, 123)
5. Stallion Heiress (Mitchell Murrill, 118)
6. Proctor’s Ledge (Corey Lanerie, 118)
7. Storm the Hill (Joel Rosario, 118)
8. Sweeping Paddy (Luis Saez, 118)
9. Dream Dancing (Leparoux, 123),
10. Purely a Dream (Florent Geroux, 118)
11. Emphatically (Flavien Prat, 118)
12. La Coronel (Leparoux, 123)
13. You Missed It (Mario Gutierrez, 118)

The Edgewood will go as the afternoon’s 10th race with a 5:04 p.m. post time.

Churchill Downs

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