Swiss Skydiver is a recent addition to the Kentucky Oaks trail, while trainer Wesley Ward has Breeders' Cup Sprint ambitions for the one-turn specialist Kimari. Here's a closer look at their bloodlines in this latest rundown of emerging 3-year-old fillies.
(Daredevil - Expo Gold, by Johannesburg)
Swiss Skydiver earned her first graded stakes victory in front-running fashion in the March 28 Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2). The Ken McPeek trainee clocked 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.54, escaping with moderate fractions on the early lead while defeating a full field by 3 3/4 lengths. Swiss Skydiver’s next goal is the Fantasy Stakes (G3) on May 1 at Oaklawn Park.
Pedigree: Swiss Skydiver has a miler pedigree.
The precocious Daredevil won the Champagne Stakes (G1) as a 2-year-old. The first-crop sire’s offspring are precocious and often distance-challenged. Swiss Skydiver is his second graded stakes winner. His daughter, Shedaresthedevil, did also capture the Honeybee (G3) around two turns at Oaklawn.
Swiss Skydiver’s half-sister, the turf sprinter Miss Hot Legs, placed in this year’s Wishing Well Stakes at Santa Anita. The filly's second dam, Clouds of Gold, is multiple Grade 3-placed at 10 furlongs in Canada. There is little blacktype in the rest of the distaff line.
(Munnings - Cozze Up Lady, by Cozzene)
The adaptable Kimari scored her third stakes victory Saturday in the Purple Martin over Oaklwan’s sloppy track. Channing Hill kept Kimari on the rail in mid-pack through a sharp first quarter, then the pair angled to the outside, swinging four wide around the turn, and wore down the pacesetters to win going away by 1 3/4 lengths. The Ward trainee got six furlongs 1:10.57. Kimari has earned $351,646 in six starts, and her resume includes victories in the Bolton Landing and Indian Summer Stakes on turf. She placed second in Royal Ascot's Queen Mary Stakes (G2) in only her second start.
Pedigree: Kimari has a sprinter/miler pedigree, and she is capable on all surfaces.
Munnings is enjoying an excellent year as a filly sire. Besides Kimari, the likes of Finite, Bonny South and Venetian Harbor all became Grade 2 winners recently.
Kimari is the first blacktype earner out of the Grade 3 sprinter/miler Cozze Up Lady, who earned $407,169 in 19 starts. She was the only foal produced by her dam, The White Lady. That one’s half-sister, Giant’s Blondaway, bore Argentinian Group 1-winning router Giant Killing and a Peruvian Group 2 winner.
(Sky Mesa - Kristi With a K, by Petionville)
Fresh off her maiden victory, Highland Glory stepped up to beat a full field in the Sanibel Island Stakes over the Gulfstream turf on the Florida Derby undercard. In a well-timed ride by Paco Lopez, Highland Glory tore down the center of the stretch to capture the Sanibel Island by a neck over Cheermeister. The Barclay Tagg trainee completed a mile in 1:34.42.
Pedigree: Highland Glory has a miler/middle-distance pedigree, although she may go farther, especially over the lawn.
Sky Mesa is a solid, established stallion with 62 graded/listed winners to his credit. The bulk of his babies can win up to 1 1/8 miles, although a few have won at classic distances as turf routers.
Highland Glory is a full sister to the multiple stakes-winning turf router Highland Sky, who captured last year’s John’s Call Stakes at 1 1/4 miles over the Saratoga lawn. Their dam, Kristi With a K, placed as a turf miler in the Athena Handicap (G3). Kristi With a K’s half-sister is Q.E. II Challenge Cup Invitational (G1) heroine Bit of Whimsey. That one bore two stakes winners, the graded-winning turf router Caroline Thomas, and turf miler My Sweet Girl.
(Into Mischief - Specification, by Empire Maker)
Center Aisle graduated at first asking on March 29 over Gulfstream’s main track. Joel Rosario eased Center Aisle off the swift :21.97 first quarter. The pair took the lead leaving the turn and glided home by 3 3/4 lengths. The Chad Brown trainee zipped six furlongs in 1:10.11. Center Aisle sold for $1.5 million at last year’s Fasig-Tipton 2-year-old sale at Gulfstream Park after recording a quarter-mile in :20.3 breeze.
Pedigree: Center Aisle has a miler/middle distance pedigree.
The filly is bred on the same bloodline cross as the ill-fated Martha Washington Stakes winner Taraz and turf sprinter Home Run Maker.
Center Aisle is the fourth winner from five starters in her immediate family. None of her half-siblings own blacktype. She has a 2-year-old Kantharos half-sister named Skeemin N Dreamin. Center Aisle’s dam, Specification, was unplaced in two starts, but she’s a half-sister to the multiple Grade 1-winning warrior Skimming, a two-time victor of the Pacific Classic. Center Aisle’s second dam, Skimble, was a multiple graded earner of $777,518 in 21 starts.
(Munnings - Cherokee Beads, by Street Sense)
Lucky Betty enjoyed stretching to two turns when she graduated over a sloppy Oaklawn track on Saturday. She dueled on the rail under Declan Cannon before drawing off by 3 1/4 lengths. The William Van Meter trainee got 1 1/16 miles in 1:46 flat.
Pedigree: Lucky Betty has a miler’s pedigree.
She’s the first foal out of a hardy mare who earned $97,619 in 25 starts. Cherokee Beads’ half-brother Bayard, a son of Munnings’ sire Speightstown, is a veteran blacktype sprinter who earned $663,836 in 36 starts. Cherokee Beads’ other half-brother, Sphene, is a winning miler who placed in two stakes at nine furlongs. Lucky Betty’s second dam, Cherokee Jewel, and third dam Betty’s Star are blacktype earning sprinters.
Congratulations to Lucky Betty with a MSW win at @OaklawnRacing on 4/4! This Munnings filly was bred by @TK_Stables and purchased by @Pbhager for Dennis Park at the @keeneland September Sale. Congratulations to all connections!#warrendalesold #keenelandgrad@decky_cann pic.twitter.com/Cf1XCnizV7— Warrendale Sales (@WarrendaleSales) April 6, 2020
(Malibu Moon - My Limit, by Wagon Limit)
Apogee raced to the head of the class of a maiden event at Tampa Bay Downs on March 29. Under Samy Camacho, Apogee made a bold late move to win the 1 1/16-mile turf event by 1 1/2 lengths. The Christophe Clement’s final time was 1:43.39.
Pedigree: Apogee has a miler pedigree.
The filly’s half-sister, Birdatthewire, captured the La Brea (G1) as the highlight of her career. The multiple graded sprinter earned $808,430 in 25 starts. Their dam, My Limit, placed in a minor stakes and earned $135,360 in 22 starts. There is little blacktype in the rest of Apogee's family.