Honeybee still abuzz with excitement
Some might say that, without Take Charge Brandi, Saturday's $150,000 Honeybee S. (G3) at Oaklawn Park has lost a lot of its luster.
They would be wrong.
The 1 1/16-mile race still features three exciting filly prospects in Promise Me Silver, Sarah Sis and Pangburn.
Promise Me Silver is, perhaps, the most exciting considering the Bret Calhoun pupil is unbeaten in all six of her career races thus far. In fact, the gray miss has romped in all but one of her races, starting with her 6 3/4-length maiden triumph at Lone Star Park in Texas and ending recently with her 9 3/4-length domination of the Two Altazano S. at Sam Houston on February 14.
Also, Promise Me Silver has crisscrossed the country in her short career, never racing at the same track twice. That will change in the Honeybee as the three-year-old filly returns to Oaklawn after taking the Dixie Belle S. in her seasonal bow by a neck.
That was the shortest margin to date for Promise Me Silver and it came against Sarah Sis, who lines back up on Saturday for a chance to turn the tables on her rival.
Sarah Sis has yet to score against stakes company, breaking her maiden and taking an allowance last year with a runner-up effort in the Arlington-Washington Lassie S. sandwiched in between.
Like Promise Me Silver, the Ingrid Mason trainee was making her sophomore bow in the Dixie Belle and missed a tough one after dueling with her foe. Sarah Sis returned most recently to once again be second, this time by just a head in the Martha Washington S. against none other than Take Charge Brandi.
The rivalry between Promise Me Silver and Sarah Sis may not reach the heights of Beholder and Princess of Sylmar last year, but it provides an exciting additive to the Honeybee.
As for Pangburn, that filly is coming to the party a bit late.
She was runner-up in the Pocahontas S. (G2) last September at Churchill Downs, but wasn't seen in competition again until posting a rallying allowance win over the Honeybee track and distance February 20. The Kenny McPeek charge was an easy winner that day, coming from well out of it while six wide to score by 1 1/4 lengths on the wire.
Pangburn garnered 4 points with her Pocahontas second, but would virtually guarantee herself a spot in the Kentucky Oaks starting gate by taking the Honeybee, which is worth 50 points toward the winner.
That is the Honeybee's true attraction, a sweet 50 points, and these three fillies will be battling it out not just against each other, but six other rivals as well.
As for the remaining field, Super Saks will be interesting to watch as she tries to stretch out once more. After a well-beaten 12th going 1 1/16 furlongs in November under the Twin Spires, the gray filly reverted to sprints once again and finished third in the Dixie Belle prior to breaking her maiden by 11 lengths last out on January 30, both at six furlongs.
Bootsy's Girl took her maiden over track and distance on January 24 by 9 3/4 lengths before running third to Pangburn last out, while Indian Annie was no factor when third in the Martha Washington in her most recent start.
Desert Valley and Purr are last-out maiden winners, and the field is completed by Oceanwave, who broke her maiden at Keeneland last October and made her sophomore debut an easy score against allowance/optional claiming foes on January 22.