With distance looming as a huge consideration, Irish-bred Lady Prancealot rates top billing among a field of eight sophomore fillies in Saturday’s Grade 1, $300,000 American Oaks going a mile and a quarter over the Santa Anita Park.
Trained by Richard Baltas, Lady Prancealot has been idle since rallying from off the pace to take the 1 1/16-mile turf Valley View Stakes (G3) on Oct. 18 at Keeneland.
None in this flight have gone 10 furlongs yet, though the Michael McCarthy-trained Vibrance, fresh off a close third-place finish in the Red Carpet Stakes (G3) going 1 3/8 miles on turf at Del Mar Nov. 30, appears a leading contender as well.
Owner: Jules Iavarone, Michael Iavarone & Jerry McClanahan
Trainer: Richard Baltas
Devoid of early foot, Lady Prancealot rallied from far back to be third, beaten 1 ¾ lengths three starts back in the Del Mar Oaks (G1) at nine furlongs. Subsequently an even sixth in the inaugural Jockey Club Invitational Oaks when stretching Sept. 7 to 1 3/8 miles at Belmont Park, she then rallied from far back to win the Valley View when ridden for the first time by veteran Joe Bravo, who has the assignment on Saturday. With a 2019 resume that reads 7: 3-1-2, a win in the Oaks would cap a tremendous year.
Owner: Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners & Donna & Jim Daniell
Trainer: Michael McCarthy
Graded stakes-placed on both dirt and turf, this Louisiana-bred filly by Violence will like make or attend to the early lead. Fresh off a solid third, beaten 1 ½ lengths in the 1 3/8-miles Red Carpet at Del Mar, she appears capable of acting at the Oaks distance and brings a solid, consistent form to the table.
THE AMERICAN OAKS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 6 of 11; approximate post time 1:30 p.m. PT
1. So Much Happy—Tiago Pereira—124
2. Apache Princess—Javier Castellano—124
3. Mucho Unusual—Joel Rosario—124
4. K P Slickem—Jorge Velez—124
5. Lady Prancealot—Joe Bravo—124
6. Pretty Point—Mike Smith—124
7. Giza Goddess—Victor Espinoza—124
8. Vibrance—Abel Cedillo—124