INGLEWOOD, Calif. (June 5, 2009) — Third Dawn, eliminated at the start in the Ashland at Keeneland in her last start, will try to duplicate her Santa Anita Oaks form in Sunday’s $150,000 Hollywood Oaks at Hollywood Park.
The daughter of Sky Mesa came close to posting a 35-1 upset two starts back in the Santa Anita Oaks when she was only beaten a nose by 2008 2-year-old filly champion Stardom Bound. In the Grade I Ashland, Third Dawn was compromised when caught unprepared at the break.
Third Dawn, owned by Ike and Dawn Thrash, will have to be on her toes Sunday in the Grade II Oaks, which drew a contentious field of eight. At 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track, it will line up as follows from the rail out:
Diamond Tags, with Mike Smith up, carries 113 pounds; Lady Lumberjack, Garrett Gomez, 113; Carlsbad, Tyler Baze, 115; Pretty Unusual, Alex Solis, 119; Will O Way, Victor Espinoza, 117; Evita Argentina, Joel Rosario, 113; Third Dawn, Rafael Bejarano, 113, and Kays and Jays, Michael Baze, 113.
Carlsbad, winner of her first five starts by a combined 54 lengths, had her streak snapped when out-run in the stretch by Witty in the seven-furlong Railbird in May. Winner of the Grade III Santa Paula in March, she has navigated two turns on one occasion, cruising to a 13 ¼-length victory in the Arizona Oaks in February.
Pretty Unusual won the Melair at 1 1/16 miles here on California Gold Rush Day, improving her record to two-for-five.
John Sadler, the trainer of Third Dawn, will also saddle Grade II winner Evita Argentina. Winner of the Moccasin here in November, she won the San Vicente in March before finishing fourth most recently in the Beaumont at Keeneland.
Bob Baffert, who saddled Oaks winners Santa Catarina (2003) and Tough Tiz’s Sis (2007), will send out Diamond Tags. Fifth in the Edgewood at Churchill Downs on May 1, the daughter of Seeking the Gold will be making her fifth start in the Oaks. She broke her maiden two starts back at Santa Anita.
Lady Lumberjack drew away to score a three-length win an optional claiming allowance here in mid-May; Will O Way closed for third in the Railbird and won the California Oaks at Golden Gate in January, and Kays and Jays enters following a 9 ½-length victory in the Richland Stakes at Lone Star Park.
The Oaks will run as the eighth of nine races on Sunday’s program. First post time is 1 p.m.
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