A field of 11 three-year-old fillies will line up on Friday for the $1 million Kentucky Oaks, with the Todd Pletcher trained Dreaming of Julia the 3-1 morning line favorite.
The daughter of A.P. Indy is coming off a 21 ¾ length win in the Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) in her last outing, earning a 114 Beyer Speed Figure.
The filly has won three of her six career starts and Pletcher again with give the leg up to John Velazquez, who is back after missing three weeks after a spill. The hall of fame rider suffered an injury to his first rib on his right side and also chipped the radius bone on his right wrist.
Pletcher will be very busy over the next few days at Churchill Downs, saddling four fillies in the Oaks and five in the Kentucky Derby (G1) on Saturday.
In addition to Dreaming of Julia, Pletcher will send out Silsita (20-1), Unlimited Budget (7-2) and Princess of Sylmar (20-1) on Friday in the Oaks.
The deep field includes three fillies that have not tasted defeat. The Bob Baffert trained Midnight Lucky is perfect in two starts, winning the Sunland Park Oaks in her last start.
Pletcher’s Unlimited Budget is perfect in four starts, and the Bill Mott trainee Closes Hatches, winner of the Gazelle (G2) at Aqueduct in her last start is perfect in three career outings.
Perhaps the biggest threat to Dreaming of Julia is the Richard Mandella trained Beholder, who won last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) and in her most recent outing won the Santa Anita Oaks (G1).
Post time for the Oaks Day card is 10:30am ET and feature six stakes on the 12-race card.
$1 million Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks
Post, Horse, Jockey, Morning-line odds
1. Silsita, G.Stevens, 20-1
2. Midnight Lucky, R.Bejarano, 9-2
3. Beholder, G.Gomez, 7-2
4. Unlimited Budget, J.Castellano, 7-2
5. Seaneen Girl, R.Napravnik, 20-1
6. Princess of Sylmar, M.Smith, 20-1
7. Pure Fun, J.Leparoux, 30-1
8. Dreaming of Julia, J.Velazquez, 3-1
9. Rose to Gold, C.Borel, 15-1
10. Flashy Gray, J.Alvarado, 15-1
11. Close Hatches, J.Rosario, 6-1
Post time: Friday, 5:45 p.m. Eastern
Television: NBC Sports Network, 5-6 p.m.
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