Showdown in Oaks Between Midnight Bisou and Monomoy Girl


Midnight Bisou, winner of the Santa Anita Oaks takes on Ashland (G1) winner Monomoy Girl in the $1 million Kentucky Oaks (G1). (Photo credit: Santa Anita Park).

The $1 million Kentucky Oaks (G1) on Friday drew a strong field of 14 three-year-old fillies and features a showdown between Midnight Bisou and Monomoy Girl.

Midnight Bisou invades from Santa Anita where the Bill Spawr trainee won the Santa Anita Oaks (G1) in her last outing, her third win in a row. Mike Smith has the return call on the daughter of Midnight Lute, who will break from the 10 post and is the 5-2 second choice on the morning line.

Monomoy Girl did not get the best of posts, breaking from the 14 and is coming off a sharp gate to wire score in the Ashland (G1) at Keeneland. She has won five of her six career starts, her lone loss coming by a neck in the Golden Rod (G2) last fall over the Churchill Downs main track.

Florent Geroux is her rider and she is the 2-1 morning line favorite for trainer Brad Cox.

There are several others in the field that have a shot including Gazelle (G2) winner My Miss Lilly and Rayya, who was the UAE Oaks (G3) winner and UAE Derby (G2) runner up against the boys.

The Oaks is race 11 on a 13-race card and is one of six stakes on an outstanding card.

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Last year’s Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Always Dreaming goes in the $400,000 Alysheba (G2) and last year’s Oaks winner Abel Tasman faces seven foes in the $350,000 La Troienne (G1).

My Best Plays Report for Friday includes my strongest plays from Belmont Park and Churchill Downs.

Let’s head out to Churchill Downs for Friday’s featured race of the day:

Churchill Downs Race 11 The Kentucky Oaks G1 (Post time 6:12 ET)

#10 Midnight Bisou   5-2

#11 My Miss Lilly   10-1

#14 Monomoy Girl   2-1

#7 Rayya   12-1

Analysis: Midnight Bisou ships in from the left coast for the Spawr barn where last out she was an impressive winner of the Santa Anita Oaks (G1), her third win in a row after losing her first two career starts by a nose. She rallied from eight in a field of nine last out after tracking the pace two back in her win in the San Ysabel (G3) in her first route try and over a wet fast surface. The way she pulled away in her last two starts she still has a little something left in the tank for today. Smith sticks on this filly, who is out of the stakes winner Diva Delite ($300,067).

My Miss Lilly has the shot of breaking up a chalky exacta. The filly was a game winner of the Gazelle (G2) last out at the Big A at nine furlongs. She has moved forward speed fig wise with each start and with the added ground. Another move forward puts her right in the mix here and her 10-1 morning line looks fair enough. She was a $670,000 Keeneland purchase, out of the stakes winner Wicked Deed ($85,560) who has dropped three other winners including stakes winner Just Wicked ($208,460).

Monomoy Girl has won five of her six career starts with the lone loss coming by a nose in the Golden Rod (G2) over the main track here. She is coming off a gate to wire score in the Ashland (G1) last out at Keeneland. She showed a different dimension two back coming from off the pace to win the Rachel Alexandra (G2) at Fair Grounds. She will need to be sent breaking from the far outside here. She is a logical player in this spot but with the tough post and short price we will try to beat her for the top spot.


WIN: #10 to win at 5-2 or better.

EX: 10,11 / 7,10,11,14

TRI: 10,11 / 7,10,11,14 / 5,7,10,11,14


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