Grade 1 heroine Noted and Quoted headlines a seven-filly field entered to go 1 1/16 miles on Sunday in the $200,000 Sunland Park Oaks.
The race is part of the Road to the Kentucky Oaks series of points races, and closes out the 50-20-10-5 portion of the Championship Series. Following the Sunland Park contest, all but one of the remaining races will be worth 100-40-20-10 points to the respective top four.
Noted and Quoted was last seen running seventh in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) at Santa Anita Park on November 5. The Bob Baffert trainee set the early pace in that 8 1/2-furlong affair before fading at the end to be beaten 10 lengths by winner Champagne Room. Prior to the Breeders’ Cup, Noted and Quoted scored a half-length win in the Chandelier Stakes (G1) going 1 1/16 miles at Santa Anita and was fourth in the seven-furlong Del Mar Debutante (G1).
Jockey Martin Garcia gets the mount for the first time on the gray daughter of The Factor as she is installed as the 9-5 morning-line favorite for the Sunland Park Oaks.
Unbeaten Ghalia is the 3-1 second choice on the morning line despite having never faced stakes rivals before. The Todd Pletcher pupil took her maiden debut by 6 3/4 lengths on January 22 and wired an allowance/optional claimer by 1 1/2 lengths on February 15. Both those races took place at Gulfstream Park at sprint distances, and the Medaglia d’Oro filly stretches out here with Jose Ortiz debuting in the pilot’s seat.
Kell Paso owns a track advantage after taking the El Paso Times Stakes on January 29 before just missing by three parts of a length when dueling next out in the Island Fashion Stakes, both at Sunland Park. The Greg Green charge gets a jockey change to Ry Eikleberry for this start.
McKenzie Honey brings a two-stakes win streak into the Sunland Park Oaks and has captured three of her last four against stakes rivals. All three came at Turf Paradise, and the most recent occurred on the turf. Jorge Bourdieu has the call for trainer Jonathan Nance.
Soft Cheese just took her maiden debut by a neck going 1 1/16 miles at Oaklawn Park on March 2. The Kenny McPeek trainee wired that contest and takes a huge step up under jockey Richard Eramia here.
Completing the Sunland Park Oaks field are What What What, a well-beaten fifth in the Santa Ysabel Stakes (G3) last out, and Conquest Slayer, sixth in the Island Fashion most recently.