5 KEE Jessamine (GII) [BC]
$200.000 2yoF 1 1/16m Turf 122lbs
One of my favorite races at my favorite race-place, we head down to Lexington for the Jessamine (GII) and this mile and a sixteenth grass stakes carries BC Day ramifications with it. It’s a full field and the AE list runnith over as well… everyone trying to get those points to make a date at DMR. I think this race could go any number of ways, as KEE is known for the upsets, but I’ll take Lake Gunn as the top choice off of that hard closing runner up finish in the Natalma (GI) at WO. The distance, the surface… it all seems to point to this one. Another that certainly warrants some attention is the lightly raced Zola. She won at first asking then ran a game second on the hill at KD, where she had the lead turning for home. This is her third start and I think she could improve, which could spell lights-out for the others. I’ll go out on a limb and put Blac Widow in the third spot – I think this is a horse sitting on a big race, but she’s back on very short rest… oh, the ups and downs of handicapping. If she runs her best, she may be tough to get past. May be a pipe-dream as she’s on the AE list but Tell Milady tingles the wallet… if she were to draw in, I think she is another that is sitting on a pretty big race, and could spell upset at a good price.
There’s a million story lines in these types of races, and the hopes and dreams of a BC Day victory could point back to this very race, so grab a cold snack and let’s get down to the rail for some mid-week action!
Here’s The Field –
Three wins for this one, breaking maiden at first asking, then taking down Alw types on the ELP turf course. Got her first stakes win on soft grass down at GP last out, so it’s time to see what’s she’s made of.
Tagged from a $50k maiden claimer and came back to break maiden at BEL over a route of ground. She’s never run a bad race but this is obviously jumping in with the sharks. Is she ready for this? I guess we find out today.
Had back to back wins on the grass prior to that sixth in the Natalma Stakes (GI) at WO, although she was passing horses in the late stages of that one. Perhaps a bad break got her? If so, she may have some odds and could be an upset type in this one.
Nothing ugly here, winning three of five starts including a CA-bred stakes at WO in her most recent. She’s a perfect two for two on the green stuff and both of those races were at a mile, so surface and distance don’t seem to be a question. Can she get it done vs. this type of competition?
She looks the part, winning at first asking, then a solid runner-up in the KD Juv F on the hill, so she’s certainly shown she is a solid filly. She’s been working well and I think you have to give her a big look in this one. She may go off as the favorite, because there just don’t seem to be any holes in her.
Another that ran big on the hill at KD, taking third (DH) in the Untappable Stakes with a big purse. She’s been a bit of a mixed bag breaking maiden at first asking, then flopping at ELP on the lawn, won an Alw race at DMR before that race at KD. Who do we get today?
Her first three races were nice, but then a last of nine in the Adirondack (GII) and a fifth (DH) in the DMR Debutante (GI) have turned the tables a bit for this one. Sharp outfit, and they know what they have, so give her another look here today.
Took three to get her first win but she showed that she’s game closing fast to be second in the Natalma (GI) at WO. Grass seems to be her friend, although she was solid on the main track as well. I think the distance is just what she wants and you have to give her a serious chance to bring home the bacon in this one.
Got the job done in her first start over the weeds, taking a MSW at BEL going seven furlongs, and she was pretty quick in that race. Still, this is a big step up, but the big barn knows what they have so she must have shown something that made them want to give her a try here. She should have some odds, as well.
I flat out love this filly but she’s back on real short rest as they try to get her in on BC Day. Broke maiden at first asking after the auction purchase, was third on the hill in the KD Juv facing the boys… so you know she is tough. Got in trouble in the Miss Grillo where she did close a bit late… but less than two weeks rest is asking a bit.
A perfect two for two breaking maiden at TUP then taking down high-end Alw company at SAR, both of those on the main track and the Alw win was on a damp surface. She could be any type but her first start on the weeds and first stakes action… we just have to see what we have here.
Has been steady on the grass breaking maiden at CD last out, and hasn’t missed a check on the green stuff. Still, this is a big step up and she will need her very best to be part of this one, especially from the far outside.
Would need some luck to draw into this one but if she does, she could be a horse to watch. Never run a bad race and was on the board in both stakes efforts. I like her more than some others in here, that’s for sure.
Broke maiden at FE on the grass then ran so-so in that WO stakes. She would need help and then some.
Two-for-two but has been running on the poor side of town. I doubt that she wants to mix it up with these.
Still a maiden, was seventh vs. graded company last out and really doesn’t need to be with this type quite yet.
COZMAN 8 / 5 / 10-(13) Willie’s Green Card 5 / 9 / 8
Categories: Grade II, STAKES ARTICLES, THE BREEDERS CUP