Alexandra Stakes Wonders: “Where is Everybody?”

Alexandra Stakes (Grade 2) (KYO)- $300.000 Purse
FG- For Fillies Three Years Old
One Mile and One Sixteenth on the Dirt
February 19, 2022

It has recently become all the rage, apparently, for fillies to try their luck on the KYD trail. With three that ran in the KYD last year, and more having success this year, we can understand why that would be the case. But you have to wonder, is this at the expense at the KYO? It’s hard to ignore that a $300.000 prep race for the Oaks is only running with six horses (and one scratch) while there are five fillies in the Risen Star.

Field sizes for the previous five races were as follows:

2017: 8 horses (and 1 scratch)
2018: 12 horses (and 2 scratches)
2019: 10 horses (and 2 scratches)
2020: 11 horses (and 1 scratch)
2021: 11 horses (and 2 scratches)

So, if we look at these numbers, you have to wonder a little bit about the impact on the KYO. This is the first 50 point race for the KYO. Where is everybody? Should other stables, perhaps smaller ones who might not have been thinking about the KYO begin looking at it with more interest? That might be something to think about for people. Of course, maybe it is just the timing. Over the last week, the discussion amongst trainers has picked up considerably about fillies on the KYD trail, and that might be making, right now, several stables start to think about the option. The Alexandra is the only KYO prep this week, another fact that should have led to a bigger field. Next week, we will have one 50-point KYO prep race, the Honeybee from OP. At the moment, the stake calendar only shows seven signed up for it. Going to be interesting to see the names there, and if the lack of entries for the Alexandra has an impact.

There are, after all, some fillies thinking the KYO is a good thing to chase, still. Let’s meet our six runners.

#1- Low Budget Java (Nakamura Stables, ridden by V R Carrasco)- No reason for this filly to try to take on the boys in the Derby, as after all she is showing tons of talent running against her own gender. She’s won three of four, with a win a few weeks ago in the $200.000 Martha Washington at OP. Has a front running style, something that is very desired right now, and Carrasco’s early style makes Nakamura’s favorite a natural to be aboard. We’re going to be seeing a lot of this filly over the next couple months, and hopefully it is on the KYO trail until the end.

#2- Drilldownfortruth (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by J R Velazquez)- This filly has won three of her first five races, and will be running as a three year old for the first time. 2021 ended very successfully for her, winning the Grade 2 Demoiselle at the beginning of December. That might make some wonder why she took the next two and a half months off and she has not worked publicly since December 30th. Hopefully, she has only gotten stronger on the farm and will show that here.

#3- Moment To Dream (Alydar Stables, ridden by A Cedillo)- For the second time in her young career, Moment To Dream was the subject of a large private sale, going from Fractious to Alydar Stables for $450.000. This is her first race for her new trainer, and her first race since December 4th which was also the last time Drilldownfortruth raced (but not the same race). Moment To Dream had an uneventful fourth place finish in the Grade 1 Starlet, missing by three lengths. That came a month after she was third in the BC Juvenile Fillies.

#4- League Of Legends (Smokey Stover, ridden by J C Ferrer)- After breaking her maiden against NY-breds at FL, League Of Legends has done nothing but finish a race with a trip to the winners circle. That streak is now at four, and she handled this track well in her most recent victory. The race was the $150.000 SIlverbulletday Stakes, a KYO prep run at a similar distance. In that race, she stalked the pacesetting Say Bye Bye, and said bye bye to her to win the race by a length. Speaking of which, look who’s in the next starting spot.

#5- Say Bye Bye (Arindel, ridden by T J Pereira)- Arindel will be looking for a little bit of revenge on League Of Legends here in the Alexandra, and there is no reason to think that he can’t get it. She has not always jumped out to the lead as she did in the Silverbulletday, and has usually been a stalker, herself. Heck, maybe both of them take a stalking trip behind Low Budget Java, we’ll have to see. Prior to the Silverbulletday (where she actually finished third, not second), she was the runner up in the Grade 2 Golden Rod after two months of rest.

#6- Jenga (Wood Duck Stables, ridden by R J Albarado)- Here is a horse that would love to get a little consistency going. In her last four races, she has two wins and two finishes of 8th or worse. Her only time running at least a mile was the Grade 2 Chandelier, and it was a very dismal performance. But that was a long time ago, horses get better, and Jenga is ready to bounce back from the Santa Ynez, her last start last month. Here’s the thing: she has bounced back very well in the past, so she may do so again. I actually think she will do exactly that, but she is a tough one to put money on, even virtual money, right now.

#7- Bella Chica- Scratched

Prediction: 1-4-5-6


— NS

Categories: Grade II, STAKES ARTICLES

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