Good juvenile action upcoming at Woodbine on Saturday and a few horses of interest to me at a bit of odds, particularly in the deep G3 Natalma Stakes. Bill Mott sends out Anna Sophia with Pat Valenzuela aboard. Coming out of a disappointing (and distant) last-place finish in the G2 Adirondack, this Oasis Dream filly makes the switch to turf—and her breeding suggests she’ll love it, as she’s closely related to Quiet Oasis who finished mid-field in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf and last out ran second, just a nose back, in the G3 La Habra on turf at Santa Anita. Through her dam, she’s related to not only multiple G1 winner Shinko Forest and multiple G1-placed Dazzling Park, but also multiple G1 victor and champion New Approach. Her last work on turf looked promising, and she’ll run on Lasix for the first time as well—nothing but positive indicators that she’ll be ready to run well.
Also in the Natalma, I don’t think Spirited Miss will get away at her 10-1 morning line odds. She’s already a sharp turf winner at Woodbine and her dam Little Hussy finished third in this very race back in 2004 (not to mention another close relative Talltalelady had the same result in 1989). Back from his French vacation, Julien Leparoux should be well-rested and ready to ride this Sky Mesa filly for Mark Casse.
Still, there’s also a lot to like about the Scat Daddy filly St Pancras whose dam Marylebone won the G1 Matron; she already won on turf going further. Northern Passion gave Tu Endie Wei a run for her money in the Ontario Debutante—and her turf stakes-placed dam A Touch of Glory is a full-sister to 2001 Natalma winner Ginger Gold. And then there’s the Hard Spun filly Hard Not To Like, a sharp winner on turf against males last out—plus her dam Like a Gem was a turf lioness.
While not quite as large a field, the G3 Summer Stakes looks to be at the mercy of Todd Pletcher-trained Finale, dominating winner of the Continental Mile last out. I love how Scat Daddy progeny are performing on turf this year, but I’m not convinced too much should be read into that Monmouth race. Maritimer ran a helluva race against the filly Hard Not To Like last out, not to mention posted a sharp work out since that event. For longer odds, I like the Giacomo gelding Jomelo—his unraced dam is out of multiple G1 victress Magical Maiden who also produced G1 Del Mar Debutante winner Miss Houdini (dam of Papa Clem).