ST. JOHN'S RIVER (Include) has recorded three consecutive runner-up finishes since breaking her maiden in January, including close seconds in the Kentucky Oaks (G1) and Fair Grounds Oaks (G2), and the promising lass will have the opportunity to garner her first stakes victory when lining up for Saturday's $300,000 Delaware Oaks (G3). She tops a field of seven three-year-old fillies in the 1 1/16-mile test, which shares the spotlight at Delaware Park with the $200,000 Robert G. Dick Memorial S. (G3) and $100,000 Barbaro S.
St. John's River got off to a tardy start in the Kentucky Oaks last out and raced far off the pace before finding her best stride in the stretch at Churchill Downs, closing with a rush to miss by only neck behind Plum Pretty (Medaglia d'Oro). The bay filly also delivered a fast finish in her previous outing, a half-length second in the Fair Grounds Oaks, and she's never been off the board in five career starts (1-3-1) for trainer Andrew Leggio Jr. St. John's River is a candidate for further improvement off those strong performances and won't face a deep group of rivals on Saturday. Rosie Napravnik will retain the mount on the likely heavy favorite.