Today’s Churchill Downs Hot List fullcard selections
Friday, April 30, 2021
Kentucky Oaks Day
By Bob Ehalt and Matt Shifman
Hot List Key:
A: A preferred horse to watch B: Secondary horse to watch
*C: Went down 2 or more betting notches and finished 1st through 3rd
*D: Went down 2 or more betting notches and finished 4th or worst
* - 4 or more betting notches if 11-1 or more.
1st race – (6) Mucho Macho Momma was a sharp maiden winner last time out and seems ready for another big try against winners. (1) Favorite Sin has speed and the rail and looks like a main threat. (2) Pop a Choc fits in well against this group. (4) Powder River looms a stretch factor here.
2nd race – (6) Seaside Retreat adds blinkers for her first start since a third at Gulfstream in January and seems poised for a winning performance. (3) Kizzy B looks like the pacesetter and could be tough to catch. (1) Love in the Air might respond to a turf to dirt switch. (4) Norma Jean B. had an awkward start last time but can rebound here.
3rd race - (4) Australasia ships in from Fair Grounds after a second straight stakes win and merits top billing. (5) Zainalarab returns for Chad after a winning debut in September and will be formidable. (2) Rookery took a nice step forward in a maiden win and can be a contender here. (7) Amalfi Princess was no worse than third in her last four starts and cannot be ignored.
4th race – (1) Malloy was second in her first start against winners and can handle these if she can duplicate that effort. (4) Take Charge Lorin was a fourth against graded stakes foes and should be a main factor here. (2) American West was second in a stakes in her 2-year-old finale and seems ready for a solid 2021 debut. (3) Illiogami staged a nice rally to break her maiden and deserves attention.
5th race – (4) Ever Dangerous fits that description off a competitive third in a Grade 3 stakes. (5) Ramsey Solution has won two of his last three races and could be a problem for the top choice. (10) Spooky Channel might move up on firm turf. (7) Big Dreaming has put in some noteworthy works for his 2021 debut.
6h race – The Alysheba Stakes Presented by Sentient Jet (G2) - (6) Maxfield suffered his first loss in the Santa Anita Derby but can bounce back here. (5) Roadster is back with Baffert and should pose the biggest threat to the favorite. (4) Chess Chief rallied strongly to win the New Orleans Classic but may not get a favorable pace to chase.
7th race – The Edgewood Stakes Presented by Newport Racing and Gaming (G2) - (6) Aunt Pearl makes her first start since winning at the Breeders’ Cup and has a class edge here. (2) Gift List was good second in her U.S. debut and seems like the main challenger. (1) Postnup will benefit from a rail trip in seeking a third straight win. (7) Zaajel is worth a look while trying turf for the first time.
8th race – The La Troienne Stakes Presented by Twinspires.com (G1) - (2) Shedaresthedevil beat Letruska in a stellar 2021 debut and another effort like that should put her in the winner’s circle. (3) Dunbar Road is a Grade 1 winner and will benefit the most if the top pick falters. (1) Envoutante tired in her 2021 debut but should gain some fitness from that start. (7) Finite showed early speed and tired last time. A return to her rating style should help here.
9th race – The Eight Belles Stakes Presented by Smithfield (G2) - (10) Dayoutoftheoffice makes a belated start to her 3-year-old season but should prove best off a 2-year-old campaign that included a second in the Breeders’ Cup. (4) Euphoric turned in a monster for her last two starts and merits respect. (6) Slumber Party could catch this field nodding off and wind up victorious off a second in the Beaumont. (5) Windmill has a nice turn of speed and may hang around until the end.
10th race – The Twin Spires Turf Sprint Stakes Presented by Sysco (G2) - (3) Fiya turned in some huge efforts last year and should be ready to pick up where he left off as a 3-year-old. (10) Sombeyay was second in a Santa Anita graded stakes and may be the one to fear. (8) Fast Boat should be charging quickly at the end and could collar the leaders in the final strides. (4) Classy John exits two solid efforts at Fair Grounds and will be a contender.
11th race – The Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) - (6) Travel Column rarely turns in a bad performance and after winning the Fair Grounds Oaks convincingly seems set for a winning effort in the distaff version of the Kentucky Derby. (1) Pauline’s Pearl put in a nice rally to win the Fantasy and should be suited by the distance and a ground-saving trip. (12) Search Result is undefeated and has the credentials to win but drew a rough post. (10) Malathaat is unbeaten and a deserving favorite but in a field this competitive others are more attractive based on their probable odds.
12th race – (2) Mintd had a rough trip when fourth against stakes company and can make amends here. (8) More Than Unusual was hurt by a bad post last time and should work out a better trip today. (4) Choate Bridge will pose a big threat in the final furlong. (7) Miss Mosaic might welcome a return to turf.
13th race – (10) Played Hard worked hard in her debut and wound up second. Should notch her maiden win here. (1) Altered Shot may be primed for a strong race in her first start since November. (3) Magic Quest missed by a neck in her debut and should not be overlooked in this field. (6) Only Kidding may not be fooling around here after finishing third in her first start.