The Bourbonette Oaks- Grade III
TP Race 6 1M Dirt
Purse $100.000 For Fillies
Three Years Old
11 fillies go to the post looking to score important Oaks points in what looks to be a wide-open affair. The more proven runners in the field all seem to have something working against them and when you add in the fact that rain is in the forecast it is anyone’s race. We are going to look at each of the entrants to see if we can solve this difficult puzzle.
1 Charleys Bade, trained by Night Rider Stables
After being claimed for $19.000 this filly has put in some game efforts sprinting both on the tough NY bred circuit and in open stakes company. Her last start was her first attempt at today’s distance of a mile and that did not go as well as she ran an even 5th in the Grade 2 Las Virgenes. Seems to be a notch below some of the others in here and with a poor jockey draw, I will look elsewhere for the winner.
2 Yesterbae, trained by Jive Inc.
First of two entrants from this stable that has been buying up fillies at a rapid pace. This one was purchased for $420.000 recently and comes into this on a four race winning streak. Her last victory was in the Grade 3 Forward Gal and because of that she will be spotting all of her rivals two pounds today. Her first attempt at the distance but recent works suggest it should not be an issue and with a good draw and good jock she is a major player.
3 Nuns Unite, trained by The Sidley Stud
Another filly that has done the majority of her damage on the NY state bred circuit including her biggest with to date in the Maid of the Mist. Her efforts in open stakes company have gone poorly though and her recent try in a NW1X was rather dull. Her works have never been great and they are significantly slower than the rest of the field so I would be surprised if she is able to hit the board.
4 Confident Lass, trained by Smokey Stover
Another trainer that is on a buying spree as he picked this filly up for $110.000 back in February. Has only gone to the post three times and is still without a win although she did run a game 3rd in the Martha Washington in the same muddy conditions that are forecast for Saturday. Has done most of her racing on the lead and since there does not seem to be an abundance of speed in here she may get to dictate an easy pace. I am not in the business of backing maidens in stakes races but she would not be a huge surprise.
5 Cobra Commanding, trained by Aer Stables
This filly also only has three lifetime starts with $18 in career earnings. Her most recent race was a NW1X at Golden Gate at today’s distance where she took the lead in the stretch bit tired late to finish second. She was been given a three month breather and has worked well coming into this event. I am going to need to see her compete against this level of competition before I can recommend.
6 Misty Firefox, trained by Crocker Ggs
Winner of 3 of 5 lifetime including ON bred stakes race that was contested over a muddy track. Her one attempt around two turns was a little disappointing and with her build there has to be some concern on whether she will like the distance. Her jockey does have a high win percentage and since she apparently likes an off track she can’t be counted out but I need her to prove she can get the distance before backing.
7 Fascinating Bottom, trained by Toppedout
She will be going to the post for her 12th lifetime start here and she has raced with success at all levels of competition. She has won at the free track but also has very nice efforts in other Oaks qualifying races including last out when she went to the front from the outside gate and fought gamely to finish a close 4th. Has started twice on an off track with a win and a second so if the track does indeed come up wet that may work to her advantage. The major obstacle working against her is a jockey that has yet to win this year and is a 7% rider.
8 Ghost Havoc, trained by Jive Inc.
The second entry from this barn was acquired for the relative bargain price of $120.000 when compared to Yesterbae. Of course, this one does not have quite the resume of that one either having won 2 of 6 starts and $55.000. This will be her first attempt at a mile, but I have a feeling the extra distance may be too her liking. Has never been on an off track so that is a big unknown but I think she is one to keep an eye on here.
9 Dame Magnifique, trained by D J C Racing Stables
Impressive winner of the Martha Washington which was conducted at today’s distance over a muddy surface. Off of that performance she would normally be my pick to win here but there are a couple of red flags. Inexplicably she has drawn a 7% jockey without a win this year while having a higher epr than many of the other contestants. She is also starting from an outside post with a short run to the first turn. I still think she has a big chance but cannot make her my first choice.
10 Line Drive, trained by Our Athletes
Has won 3 of 9 lifetime while competing in many of the top 2 year old races. Scored an impressive win in the Grade 3 Matron which qualified her for the BC Juvenile Filly where she finished a close 5th. Does her best racing from far off the pace so the outside post may not be as big of an issue to her. My main concern is that she has not shown well in her routing attempts and with no mile works I am not sure she wants to go this far.
11 Just A Few, trained by Mb Stables
It takes us until our last entry to get to one from the sites leading trainer. Mb is known for scratching when his horses draw the far outside but since he has left her in to this point I have to feel he will be letting her compete here. She was an impressive winner of the Gasparilla Stakes last out and draws the tracks leading rider who is winning at a ridiculous 47% clip. If she can work out a trip from this difficult post she will be right there at the finish.
I am having a hard time coming up with a selection in this one and I imagine the pickem will be widely dispersed for this race. Another factor making this race difficult is the probability of an off track. I think Yesterbae will be able to sit the perfect trip in here and if she can handle the track and extra weight she should get home first. Those are some mighty big ifs though so I would not be surprised to see any of about 6 get home first here.