The 2014 version of the Kentucky Oaks drew an almost-full field of 13 fillies for Friday's race, one stands out like a giant among the rest of her peers: Untapable. A daughter of Tapit out of a Prized mare (Fun House), Untapable rolls into the Oaks after destroying her rivals in back-to-back races at the Fair Grounds (G3-Rachel Alexandra and the G2-Fair Grounds Oaks) by a combined margin of 17 1/4 lengths. Not only was Untapable miles the best in New Orleans this winter/spring but her nearest rivals struggled to be within sight of this filly at the finish line.
I love to bet the Oaks every year but, unfortunately, there probably won't be much value in the win pools unless Untapable decides she doesn't feel like running. Once you get past the heavy favorite it's tough to separate a many of the fillies rounding out the rest of the field so perhaps we can find some ways to make money in the exotic pools.
Among the fillies stepping up to challenge the heavy morning line favorite in the Oaks are:
- Ria Antonia: Winner of the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies last fall and second to Fashion Plate in the G1-Santa Anita Oaks in her most recent start.
- Sugar Shock: Winner of the G3-Fantasy and G3-Honeybee at Oaklawn this winter.
- Rosalind: Winner of the G1-Ashland Stakes on the Polytrack at Keeneland back on April 5th.
- Fashion Plate: Winner of the G1-Santa Anita Oaks and G1-Las Virgenes at Santa Anita this winter.
- Unbridled Forever: Third in the Fair Grounds Oaks and winner of the ungraded Silverbulletday at the Fair Grounds on January 18.
- My Miss Sophia: Winner of the G2-Gazelle by 7 1/4 lengths at Aqueduct on April 5th.
Churchill Downs will offer the usual Oaks-Derby Double for those that want to spread the action over a couple of days but I'm pretty sure about 99.9% of all tickets will contain the Untapable in the first leg.
Below are the entries, post positions and morning line odds for Friday's Kentucky Oaks:
|1||Please Explain||J. Lezcano||T. Proctor||50/1|
|2||Ria Antonia||M. Smith||B. Baffert||10/1|
|3||Sugar Shock||C. Borel||D. Anderson||12/1|
|4||Rosalind||J. Rosario||K. McPeek||8/1|
|5||Thank You Marylou||J. Leparoux||M. Maker||30/1|
|6||Kiss Moon||V. Espinoza||D. Vance||30/1|
|7||Fashion Plate||G. Stevens||S. Callaghan||6/1|
|8||Aurelia's Bell||C. Hill||W. Catalano||50/1|
|9||Unbridled Forever||R. Albarado||D. Stewart||12/1|
|10||Empress of Midway||C. Nakatani||D. O'Neill||50/1|
|11||My Miss Sophia||J. Castellano||T. Pletcher||8/1|
|12||Got Lucky||J. Velazquez||T. Pletcher||20/1|
|13||Untapable||R. Napravnik||S. Asmussen||4/5|