Tonalist’s Shape showed speed from the start and posted a comfortable wire-to-wire victory in Saturday’s $200,000 Davona Dale (G2) at Gulfstream Park, remaining unbeaten in her fifth career outing. Tyler Gaffalione was up for Saffie Joseph Jr., and the 3-year-old filly captured her second straight Road to the Kentucky Oaks series qualifier with the 1 3/4-length decision.
With the 50-point prize, Tonalist’s Shape moved to second on the Oaks Leaderboard with 60 total. She was exiting an easy score in the seven-furlong Forward Gal on Feb. 1, and has won every start by open lengths. The Davona Dale was the first wire-to-wire triumph for the three-time stakes winner.
Slam Dunk Racing, Doug Branham, and Legacy Ranch campaign the chestnut, who is from the first crop of four-time Grade 1 hero and $3.6 million earner Tonalist.
Off as the 2-1 second choice, Tonalist’s Shape drew off sharply leaving the far turn after showing the way early on a short lead, registering comfortable fractions in :23.84 and :46.93 along the way to completing the one-turn mile in 1:36.77.
She was chased throughout by 7-10 favorite Spice is Nice, who could not accelerate with the winner into the stretch but fought back a challenge from 28-1 outsider Dream Marie to hold second by 2 3/4 lengths. Dream Marie wound up 7 1/2 lengths clear of Reluctant Bride in fourth, and Addilyn, Emily’s Oasis, Bayerness, Nikki and Papa, and Chart completed the order.
Bred in Kentucky by Sabana Farm, Tonalist’s Shape is out of the stakes-winning Harlan’s Holiday mare Hitechnoweenie. She is eligible to stretch out to two turns for the first time in the next start, with the March 28 Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) an option.