Iowa Oaks One of a Handful of Solid Stakes at Prairie Meadows
Category : News
Sun 29/06/2014 - 19:52 EDT
The Iowa Oaks looks to be an intriguing piece of an excellent racing card at Prairie Meadows.
The $200,000, Grade III race at a mile and a sixteenth will be contested by nine fillies including two comebackers – Sugar Shock and Ria Antonia – from the Kentucky Oaks. Sugar Shock is the morning line favorite at 5/2 as she atoned for a disappointing eighth place finish at Churchill with a solid front-running score in the Panthers Stakes at Prairie Meadows May 31. Her class and experience make her the deserving favorite as she has now crossed the wire first in five of her last six races.
Breeders’ Cup champ Ria Antonia looms with a chance
Another major player is 2013 Breeder’s Cup Juvenile Fillies winner Ria Antonia (5/1 ML), who is looking to rebound after being trounced in both the Kentucky Oaks and Preakness Stakes. The latter race was an ill-advised attempt that likely can be attributed to over-ambitious plans by her owners. Nonetheless, she ships to Prairie Meadows for trainer Tom Amoss and finds herself in a much better spot in the Iowa Oaks where she will carry the lightest weight in the field at 112 lbs – a nine pound drop from her previous two starts. Sugar Shock, by contrast, will carry nine more lbs than Ria Antonia.
Size has made a recent habit of hitting the board
The wild card in the race could be the Bill Mott trained shipper, Size (6/1 ML), who has made three career starts at six furlong with two wins and a second place finish in the Jersey Girl Stakes at Belmont. At the very least Size could ensure a lively pace.
The Grade 2 $1.25 million Pennsylvania Derby features the two biggest names from the Triple Crown trail September 24 at Parx as a field of 12 gathers in one of the most intriguing betting races of the year.
The $1 million Cotillion Stakes September 24 at Parx features a true clash of the titans as the six-horse field is headlined by the undefeated, five-time grade 1 winner Songbird who figures to face the most stern challenge of her career.
In a completely wide open renewal of the Presque Isle Mile September 18 at Presque Isle Downs, 13 runners including the also-eligible will contest the eight furlong trip over synthetic footing.
Champion Songbird is set to make her much-anticipated return to the races in the $200,000 Summertime Oaks at Santa Anita on Saturday. The Grade 2 event will be run at a mile and a sixteenth and has attracted a field of seven.