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Del Mar Oaks

Posted by Brian Mulligan on 8/13/2015 3:24:52 AM

About the Race and Track

Santa Anita

The best sophomore fillies on the West Coast gather at Del Mar Saturday for the 9-furlong Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks on turf and since the inception of this race in 1957, this fixture has identified some real stars.

The late great Charlie Whittingham owned this race as he saddled 7 Oaks winners including Turkish Trousers in 1971.

Bert Bacharach’s Heartlight No. One, Hidden Light, Flawlessly , and Hollywood Wildcat counted the Oaks as successes.

Last year Personal Diary was coming off a head defeat in an allowance fray before coming from dead last to take the Oaks with a 94 Beyer at a juicy 9-1.


A Longshot With Some Value: Sharla Rae

This racer must prove it on grass but she was troubled two back, has a nice turn of late foot, has trained super locally including the second best of 52 works of the day 8 mornings ago. A late run should be in the offing.


The Pick: Ben’s Cat Prize Exhibit (Win)

Prize Exhibit was troubled last year in the Breeders’ Cup Juveniles Fillies Turf when beaten by a very nice filly but is 3 for 6 since including winning the prep for this race last month, the San Clemente.

Her Emmynency showed her class last year with the neck beat in the Grade 1 Del Mar Deb. She was fully extended in her 2015 opener and had no apparent excuse last time.

Majestic Heat draws the cozy rail slot and is coming off the same kind of win that last year’s Oaks win recorded. She has only run one poor race and was off slowly that day.

Paulina’s Love took time to figure it out but the light has finally gone on. She will have to invent a way to beat archrival in Prize Exhibit.

Rattataptap is coming off her best stakes attempt but really was not scaring the winner.

Sharla Rae has much more speed than she just showed. Connections thought enough of her to cross the country but that just didn’t pan out.

Zipessa has options as she is also entered Friday and trainer is on record he wants to run there.

Sunset Glow must contend with the marooned post. She made the lead last time from the rail but could not hold off Prize Exhibit but has been fit enough to drill a couple of times since. Consistency has been her calling card. She has been in the money every time and is looking at the same fate.

The way the race shapes up is that there appears to be enough speed in here to help the closers. Sunset Glow has to send; Paulina’s Love has valid speed and since Rattataptap is fresh, would not be surprised if she were aggressive early on.

If the pace scenario unfolds like projected, Prize Exhibit will be a handful. She ran decently in big fields early in her career, has two sharp works since winner her last race and she proved last time she loves this course. Can’t fault those that figure she can put three wins together.

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