If you're visiting Churchill Downs, please visit the Churchill Downs Store, open during the spring, September, and fall race meets from gate opening time to 30 minutes after the last race. Located off the Paddock, inside the Gate 17 entrance, the Churchill Downs Store offers a wide array of officially licensed Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs merchandise. To contact the store call (502) 636-4850 or (800) 59-DERBY. To shop online, click here.
The store is operated by the Kentucky Derby Museum, a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization.
CALIFORNIA / BLIND LUCK FAVORED IN SANTA ANITA OAKS – Blind Luck, the favored individual filly in this week’s Kentucky Oaks Future Wager, figures to be a strong fans’ choice when she faces seven rivals in Saturday’s $250,000 Santa Anita Oaks (Grade I).
A victory in the 1 1/16-mile race over the track’s synthetic Pro-Ride surface would be Blind Luck’s fourth career Grade I triumph and solidify her status as the top West Coast hope for the $500,000-added Kentucky Oaks (GI), which will be run on Friday, April 30 at Churchill Downs. Jockey Rafael Bejarano will ride the 3-year-old daughter of Pollard’s Vision, who is trained by Jerry Hollendorfer and took Santa Anita’s Las Virgenes (GI) in her most recent start.
A major rival could be Crisp, who was fourth in the Las Virgenes but earlier won the Santa Ysabel (GIII). The John Sadler-trained Crisp will race with blinkers for the first time. Sadler has two other Santa Anita Oaks hopefuls in Jerry and Ann Moss’ Cozi Rosie and Sister Dawn. Another contender is All Due Respect, third in the Pocahontas (GIII) at Churchill Downs.
FLORIDA / BONNIE MISS NEXT FOR CHRISTINE DAAE? – Impressive allowance winner Christine Daae could make her next start on the road to the Kentucky Oaks in Gulfstream Park’s Bonnie Miss Stakes (GII) on March 20.
Trainer Patrick Biancone’s daughter of Giant’s Causeway could meet Davona Dale (GII) winner Amen Hallelujah in that one. Christine Daae had been entered in last week’s Davona Dale, but Biancone scratched her in favor of a successful run in a 1 1/8 mile allowance race.
“She relaxed very well and when called upon she was gone,” said Biancone. “She had enough quality to run in the Davona Dale, but it would have been a hard race and might have taken its toll down the road.”
Corey Nakatani was aboard Christine Daae in her allowance victory.
EAST / ‘SONJA,’ ‘GATOR’ HEAD WIDE COUNTRY – Judge Sonya and Gator Prowl head a field of nine 3-year-old fillies entered in Saturday’s seven-furlong Wide Country Stakes at Laurel Park.
Judge Sonya ships to Maryland from New York, where she finished third in the Busanda and second in the Dearly Precious at Aqueduct. Gator Prowl, unbeaten in four races at Laurel, set the track record for six furlongs in winning the Marshua’s Dancer Stakes.
OAKS FUTURE WAGER OPENS FRIDAY – Blind Luck, Amen Hallelujah and Christine Daae are the favored individual fillies, but the mutuel field – or “all others” – is the 4-1 morning line choice in the three-day Kentucky Oaks Future Wager that opens on Friday, March 5 at noon (all times EST). Betting on the Oaks Future pool concludes at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 7.