flees the Santa Anita speed highway and runs into Havre De Grace for the fifth time in Saturday's Azeri (G3) Stakes at Oaklawn Park.
The two consistent fillies first clashed in last year's Delaware Oaks (G2) with Blind Luck getting up by a nose. The Hollendorfer trainee necked her arch rival in the Alabama (G1) at Saratoga and Havre De Grace turned the tables in the Cotillion (G2) at Parx Racing. They ended the year running 2-3 in the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic with Blind Luck finishing in front of her nemesis for the third time.
Blind Luck has not won since the aforementioned Alabama and brings a string of four runner-up efforts into Saturday's race. Garrett Gomez hops aboard the late running threat and ships to Arkansas in hopes of finding pace help and a fair racing surface. Havre De Grace
makes her first start of the year and is training well for her new trainer larry Jones. She owns fine tactical speed and Dominguez hops aboard the fresh threat. Tidal Pool
exits a romping local optional claiming flat mile victory and she placed in a trio of graded routes for Wayne Lukas last year. A ground saving tactical trip under Terry Thompson is anticipated.
Lukas also saddles Absinthe Minded
and the sharp daughter of Quiet American has rolled in two straight. She clearly does her best work at Oaklawn and is probably the one to catch under Calvin Borel. Spacy Tracy
makes her first start since November for Tony Dutrow, the former trainer of Havre De Grace. The grade two winner goes for her fourth win in a row but found a salty return spot. Kimber Lily
has rattled off three straight against lesser. She gets a severe class test today and is probably up against it. Shotgun Gulch
completes the seven horse field. She landed the show behind Switch in the La Brea (G1) in December and seems best in sprints.
The Azeri Stakes is the ninth race on the Oaklawn Park program and the eight and one-half furlong event shares top billing with the Rebel Stakes (G2).