Shedaresthedevil pulls off the upset over Gamine at Kentucky Oaks
It was supposed to be a matchup of the two best 3-year-old fillies in the $1.25 -million Kentucky Oaks on Friday but it turned into anything but when Shedaresthedevil rolled past Gamine and held off Swiss Skydiver to win by 1½ lengths in the female version of the Kentucky Derby.
Expectations for Gamine, a $1.8-million purchase, were so high that trainer Bob Baffert even floated the idea the filly, with a convincing win, could take on colts in the Preakness. But Gamine showed that 1 1/8 miles were too much on Friday as she and Shedaresthedevil went 1-2 around the track before Gamine started to ease back and left Swiss Skydiver to take up chase.
“She just didn’t have it,” Baffert said. “Turning for home, she was in a good spot and she was late switching leads and she never does that. I don’t know if she just got tired or whatever. But down the backside she couldn’t have been any better, she was in the perfect spot. She just didn’t have it there.”
Kentucky Derby favorite Tiz The Law already has won the Belmont Stakes. That’s just one of the many unusual aspects of the 146th running of the Derby.
Shedaresthedevil’s trainer, Brad Cox, had won earlier in the day at Churchill Downs with Monomoy Girl in the $500,000 La Troienne Stakes.
“This is why you wake up every morning to get to win races like this,” Cox said. “This filly has been really impressive coming into the race and when she breezed with Monomoy Girl a couple weeks ago, we knew how well she was training. These were some tough fillies in the Oaks this year with Swiss Skydiver and Gamine.”
Shedaresthedevil paid $32.20, $8.40 and $3.80. Following Swiss Skydiver (paying $3.80 and $2.60) and Gamine ($2.40) were Speech, Tempers Rising, Hopeful Growth, Bayerness, Donna Veloce and Dream Marie.
In the $400,000 Alysheba Stakes, heavily favored McKinzie finished fourth for Baffert. The 5-year-old McKinzie, named for late Los Alamitos executive Brad McKinzie, has won eight of his 18 lifetime races but only once this year.
Cherwa reported from Orlando, Fla.
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