Forward Gal Stakes (G3) winner Take Charge Paula lines up in Saturday’s $300,000 Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) against 12 rivals in search of enough points to solidify her spot in the Kentucky Oaks (G1) starting gate on May 4 at Churchill Downs.
The Gulfstream Park Oaks is part of the Road to the Kentucky Oaks series of points races, and offers up 100-40-20-10 points to the respective top four finishers.
Take Charge Paula already boasts 30 points, earning 10 for her Forward Gal score and another 20 when running second last out in the Davona Dale Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park. That’s enough for the Take Charge Indy filly to currently sit in ninth on the Kentucky Oaks Leaderboard.
The Kiaran McLaughlin trainee stretches out to 1 1/16 miles on Saturday for the first time since suffering her only unplaced effort to date when 10th, beaten double-digit lengths, in last year’s Pocahontas Stakes (G2) under the Twin Spires. Jose Oritz has the first-time call on Take Charge Paula in the Gulfstream Park Oaks.
Heavenhasmynikki finished another three-quarters of a length behind Take Charge Paula in third and will attempt to turn the tables on that filly Saturday. The Anthony Quartarolo trainee was also fourth in the Forward Gal while making her stakes bow, and gets Robby Albarado aboard to help her chances in this third try against stakes company.
C. S. Incharge earned her initial win in her fifth start, wiring an off-the-turf maiden over Gulfstream’s sloppy, sealed track by 3 1/2 lengths at Saturday’s 8 1/2-furlong distance. Trainer Dale Romans immediately sent her against stakes rivals next out and the Take Charge Indy filly prevailed in the Suncoast Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs by three parts of a length. Chris Landeros holds the reins for the first time in this spot.
Daisy just missed by three parts of a length to C. S. Incharge in the Suncoast and will look to turn the tables Saturday. The John Servis trainee captured her first two starts as a juvenile, including a 4 3/4-length victory in the Tempted Stakes (G3) at Aqueduct last November, and keeps John Velazquez in the irons. Mihrab ran third in the Suncoast, 1 1/4 lengths behind Daisy, and gets a rider change to Nik Juarez in this return.
Cache finished fifth in the Davona Dale following a maiden debut win going seven furlongs over the track. Trainer Mark Hennig has tabbed jockey Julien Leparoux to ride the Distorted Humor filly for the first time here.
Blonde Bomber closed out her juvenile campaign in stellar fashion for conditioner Stanley Gold, recording a 4 1/2-length maiden win and 7 1/4-length stakes victory before finishing a rallying third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) at Del Mar in November. Unfortunately, the gray daughter of Fort Larned hasn’t carried that form forward into her sophomore campaign, finishing off-the-board in both the Silverbulletday Stakes and Suncoast in her two races this season. Blonde Bomber will try to turn things around under Edgard Zayas.
Eight Thirtyone, Coach Rocks and Silver Bay are all exiting wins. Eight Thirtyone is two-for-two thus far and makes her stakes bow under Albin Jimenez here. Coach Rocks took seven tries to break her maiden, getting the job done by eight lengths in gate-to-wire fashion last out in mid-February, and retains the services of Luis Saez. Silver Bay broke her maiden by 5 1/2 lengths and took the Juvenile Fillies Sprint Stakes, both at Gulfstream Park West, in her two lifetime starts thus far. The gray lass makes her sophomore bow Saturday with Tyler Gaffalione returning to the saddle.
Completing the Gulfstream Park Oaks field are Princess Warrior, who ran fourth in a turf stakes most recently; Tell Your Mama, still winless after eight lifetime starts; and Alter Moon, a fading sixth in the Davona Dale after dueling early with Heavenhasmynikki.