Homeracing

Stakes spot plays at Oaklawn Park for Feb. 28

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

February 27th, 2021

The seasonal debut of two-time champion Monomoy Girl headlines a fine day of racing at Oaklawn Park on Sunday. A trio of stakes races, led by the $250,000 Bayakoa S. (G3), are on the slate. While the marquee runner on the card will be tough to knock off at short odds, there is value to be had in the pair of undercard events.

Here is my take:

Bayakoa

Six fillies and mares will vie in the headliner, and #6 Monomoy Girl (1-1) received a perfect post draw on the outside. Tapizar mare has posted nine perfectly spaced drills in advance of her first appearance since bringing $9.5 million at Keeneland November, and I will not try to upend her.

I will play a straight exacta with the top choice over #4 Istan Council (6-1). The Larry Jones charge has hit the board in four straight, including a decent third in the local Pippin S. last time out.

Dixie Belle S.

A well-matched field of sophomore fillies will go postward in the six-furlong affair. #2 Mariah’s Princess (7-2) gets top billing for Phil Bauer. Ghostzapper filly was a smart maiden graduate two back, prior to registering a solid runner-up allowance result at Fair Grounds in her two-year-old finale. The bay smoked a bullet five-eighths in her lone work on the Oaklawn strip in early February.

Downthedustyroad S.

The six-furlong test for Arkansas-bred fillies and mares features a huge field of 12 in an intriguing betting affair. #6 Bye Bye J (3-1) won this race at 3-5 odds last season and will be tough right back for Asmussen. Chestnut five-year-old has a major class edge over her foes after facing tons better over the past few seasons, and her best performance will lead her to the winners’ circle.

However, the daughter of Uncaptured shows declining Brisnet Speed figures as of late, and I am also somewhat skeptical of the move to remove blinkers following two subpar efforts in succession. I will go against her at a short price.

#3 Miss Antioch (8-1) has improved her Speed number in every lifetime effort for Allen Milligan. Jonesboro chestnut was a sharp winner off the shelf in her debut on the surface most recently, and a forward move is likely second time back. Richard Eramia retains the amount atop the speedy four-year-old.

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