Kentucky Derby hopeful Danzig Moon gallops on the track during morning workouts at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky, April 29, 2015. Trainers are preparing their horses to run in the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby to be held at Churchill Downs on May 2. Photo by John Sommers II/UPI | License Photo
Stellar Wind has been made the 7-2 morning line favorite for Friday's $1 million Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs. The 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-old fillies, the companion event to Saturday's 141st Kentucky Derby, attracted 14 fillies and one also-eligible.
Trained by John Sadler, Stellar Wind will start the Oaks from post 12 with Victor Espinoza riding. Espinoza will be aboard American Pharoah Saturday, the expected favorite for the Run for the Roses.
"She's amazing," Espinoza said about Stellar Wind. "The first time I rode her, I told John that she's a special filly and I'm really excited to be riding her. Sure enough, she won the (Santa Anita) Oaks ... very impressively. She has size, talent and pedigree. On top of that, I'm a very dependable guy. It goes 50-50."
Stellar Wind, owned by Hronis Racing, won the Santa Anita Oaks by 5 1/4 lengths on April 4 and her three starts since finishing third in her debut effort last Nov. 20 at Laurel Park. The chestnut filly has banked $327,200.
I'm a Chatterbox and Condo Commando are the co-second choices in the morning line at 4-1. Trained by Larry Jones, I'm a Chatterbox will break from post 8 with jockey Florent Geroux and Condo Commando, trained by Rudy Rodriguez, will be ridden by Joel Rosario from post 5.
I'm a Chatterbox, owned by Grayson Farm, won the Fair Grounds Oaks on March 29 to sweep the track's stakes series for 3-year-old fillies, including the Silverbulletday and Rachel Alexandra Stakes. I'm a Chatterbox has earned $420,000 this season and $468,614 overall.
"We had a great winter down in New Orleans," Jones said. "We did well at the Fair Grounds."
Stablemate Lovely Maria is 5-1 in the program and will start from post 7 with Kerwin Clark riding. Owned by Brereton Jones, Lovely Maria won Keeneland's Ashland Stakes on April 4 after finishing second in the Rachel Alexandra. The filly has three wins and three seconds in seven starts for $402,600.
Larry Jones has won the Kentucky Oaks twice with Proud Spell in 2008 and Believe You Can in 2011.
Condo Commando, owned by Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stables and The Elkstone Group, has won five of six career starts for $748,600. She's coming off wins to begin this year in the Gazelle and Busher Stakes, both at Aqueduct.
Here is the field for the 141st Kentucky Oaks from the rail out: Forever Unbridled, Mike Smith, 15-1; Shook Up, Robby Albarado, 30-1; Include Betty, Rosemary Homeister Jr., 20-1; Esekenformoney, Javier Castellano, 20-1; Condo Commando, Joel Rosario, 4-1; Angela Renee, John Velazquez, 15-1; Lovely Maria, Kerwin Clark, 5-1; I'm a Chatterbox, Florent Geroux, 4-1; Money'soncharlotte, Paco Lopez, 50-1; Oceanwave, Rafael Bejarano, 30-1; Sarah Sis, Gary Stevens, 30-1; Stellar Wind, Victor Espinoza, 7-2; Birdatthewire, Irad Ortiz Jr., 6-1 and Puca, Junior Alvarado, 15-1. Also eligible: Peace and War, Julien Leparoux, 50-1. All starters will carry 121 pounds.
Post time for the Kentucky Oaks will be approximately 5:49 p.m. ET.