GI – Alabama
$600.000 Graded Stake 1 1/4 Miles on Dirt For Filly Three Year Olds
2016 Champ: Wicked Heat
The GI Alabama is one of the biggest races on the summer calendar for three year old fillies and this year has attracted eleven fillies looking for their piece of the $600.000 purse. The field has a little bit of everything, from fillies that havn’t even earned $50.000 to a few ready to break through the $1000.000 barrier.
1- Volterra (Trained by Alabarda Stable, Ridden by Bravo J)
Leaving from the rail is Volterra. Her last race was a very disappointing one, she never looked comfortable as right from the gate dropped to last and only dug a deeper hole as the race went on. Unless it has been on an off track she has never handled going a mile or more on the dirt this year so not a whole lot suggests she will be much of a factor in the race.
2- Updated (Trained by Mb Stables, Ridden by Ortiz J L)
The first of three from the stable of Mb Stables. After just missing out in the WO Oaks she was able to bounce back in the second leg of the Canadian filly triple crown with a dominating four length victory. The race time of that win is slightly slower then many of the other winners in this race but their is no doubt she continues to improve. She could be one to look at as a long shot but not sure she is ready to take down these talented fillies.
3- Bonkers (Trained by Team 7 Illusions, Ridden by Baze T C)
Probably the biggest question mark in this whole race is Bonkers. She has run eight career races but never once set foot on dirt. Her whole career has been spent on the turf so it is very hard to know what to expect from her. Her works are average for this type of race so based on all that it would be a surprise if she makes herself a contender.
4- Two For One (Trained by Mb Stables, Ridden by Gallardo A A)
With only five career starts she along with Baby Goes To Rio are the lightest raced fillies in the field but what she lacks in experience she makes up for with talent. In those five career starts she has finished in the top two in all those races and already has a graded stake win with her last race.
5- Pip Knows Skeleton (Trained by Chili King Stables, Ridden by Rosario J)
She has run against tough fields all season long and had some tough results. She continues to be a fringe runner in bigger races but hasn’t been able to find a way to break through as of yet. This is a tough field and unlikely the time she finds a way to breakthrough.
6- Whispering Nurse (Trained by D J C Racing Stable, Ridden by Moran D)
The last few months have been a successful one for Whispering Nurse. She has won a GII, GI and narrowly missed out being the WO Oaks champ when finishing second. She has never finished outside the top three in her nine race career and will be looking to break the $500.000 in earnings mark if she can come home with any check in this one. She is every owners dream always running a solid race. Her works also continue to improve and obviously one of the top picks in this tough field.
7- First Time (Trained by Smokey Stover, Ridden by Espinoza V)
Another impressive filly in this race is First Time. She had a blowout win in the NY bred Critical Eye. She followed that up with a close second place in the Iowa Oaks. If she can get a nice pace to run at the race should setup just the way she wants it to and can see her taking home the title.
8- Blackberry (Trained by Our Athletes, Ridden by Castellano J J)
Two straight GII wins after a solid third in the KY Oaks will likely make Blackberry one of the post time favorites. Everything suggests she is only getting better every race and doesn’t look like that will slow down anytime soon. She reunites with the jockey she was only a length off winning the KY Oaks with and will likely be stalking the leader through most of the race hoping to make a move down the lane.
9- Musical Treat (Trained by Mb Stables, Ridden by Talamo J)
The final horse for Mb Stables in the race is Musical Treat. She came away with a GIII victory in the IND Oaks in her last race. A few of her mile works put her in the top 10 among three year old fillies this year. She was able to break out in her most recent start and get her first graded stake win of what looks like will be many.
10- K T D (Trained by Aer Stables, Ridden by Alvarado J)
The 2017 Kentucky Oaks winner is looking to get back in the win column after two straight second place finishes. Based on her recent races the added distance could be just what she is looking for to get that win. At a mile and an eighth she still looks like she has some left in the tank at the end of the race so the added distance should not hurt her. Her connections have also gone with a new jockey hoping the shake up will help get that win.
11- Baby Goes To Rio (Trained by Aml Racing, Ridden by Van Dyke D)
A possible up and coming star is Baby Goes To Rio. She has only run five times in her young career but has improved basically every time she has loaded into the gate. She is also improving every morning and based on her recent races she should be excited to run the mile and an eighth distance. The race appears to set up well for her and expect a big run from her. She might not be ready to win but hitting the board is definitely in the cards.
My Selections: 7/8/9