Vale Dori seeking to take the next step
The Bob Baffert pupil has done nothing wrong winning her first four starts in 2017, all graded stakes, and she boasts a six-race win streak dating back to the fall.
A Group 1 scorer in her native Argentina in 2015 Vale Dori made her U.S. debut at Del Mar last summer and possesses good speed and a fine closing kick, posting results that speak for themselves. But the looming question surrounding this Godolphin color bearer is: Who has she been beating?
The 5-year-old mare will face off against a pair of champions Saturday, Stellar Wind and Finest City. Vale Dori defeated the latter two back, recording a 1 ½-length tally in the Santa Margarita (G1) at “The Great Race Place,” but she still needs to prove herself against a distaffer of the caliber of Stellar Wind.
Perched on the rail for the Beholder, Vale Dori figures to be sent from the opening bell by Rafael Bejarano, who would love to try and put this field asleep on the front end through soft opening fractions. It will take a special performance to defeat the outstanding Stellar Wind, who bagged the Apple Blossom (G1) in her seasonal debut and loves Santa Anita, but I won’t put it past Vale Dori.
She appears to be the controlling speed and in a West Coast division that also boasts the exquisite Songbird, Vale Dori can enhance her legacy with a front-running victory.