Monomoy Girl and Wonder Gadot (c) Bob Newell/Horsephotos.com
Michael Dubb, Monomoy Stables LLC, The Elkstone Group LLC and Bethlehem Stables LLC’s Monomoy Girl dug deep in the stretch of Friday’s $1 million Kentucky Oaks (G1) to claim victory over a tough foe in Wonder Gadot.
The duo hooked up in the lane after Monomoy Girl tracked the early pace set by Take Charge Paula. That rival backed up entering the final bend, leaving the way clear for jockey Florent Geroux to send Monomoy Girl straight to the front.
The Brad Cox trainee grabbed command but soon found company in the form of Wonder Gadot and jockey John Velazquez. There was a slight bit of contact in the stretch run when Monomoy Girl came over from Geroux’s left-handed whip, but the Tapizar filly finally inched clear in the shadow of the wire to score by a half-length. She finished nine furlongs over the fast main track at Churchill Downs in 1:49.13.
Velazquez claimed foul for the contact in the stretch, but the stewards soon declared the race official with no changes.
Monomoy Girl was the 2-1 favorite on the morning line but drifted up to be the 5-2 second choice by the time the gates opened. She returned $7.20, $4.60 and $3.60 for improving her record to read 7-6-1-0 and doubling her career earnings to $1,120,720.
Wonder Gadot was game in second, 3 3/4 lengths in front of Midnight Bisou on the wire. Midnight Bisou was the 2-1 favorite after being the 5-2 morning-line second choice, and held third by a half-length from Eskimo Kisses.
It was another 5 1/2 lengths back to Chocolate Martini, who was followed under the wire by Sassy Sienna, Coach Rocks, Kelly’s Humor, Heavenhasmynikki, Classy Act, My Miss Lilly, Patrona Margarita, Rayya and Take Charge Paula.
Monomoy Girl added a fourth stakes win to her resume thanks to the Run for the Lilies, which joins a 6 1/2-length romp in last year’s Rags to Riches Stakes under the Twin Spires, a 2 1/2-length score in the Rachel Alexandra Stakes (G2) to open her sophomore campaign on February 17 at Fair Grounds and a 5 1/2-length wire job in the Ashland Stakes (G1) at Keeneland last out on April 7. The chestnut filly’s only loss to date came as a neck second in the Golden Rod Stakes (G2) at Churchill as a juvenile.
Bred in Kentucky by FPF LLC and Highfield Ranch, Monomoy Girl is the first registered stakes winner out of the Henny Hughes mare Drumette, who is half-sister to Grade 3 victor Drum Major.
Monomoy Girl’s fifth dam is Lady Dulcinea, a half-sister to a slew of black-type winning and producing mares including the dam of 1991 Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) hero Opening Verse. This lucrative female line also boasts 1980 champion two-year-old filly Heavenly Cause and multiple Grade 1-winning millionaire Bounding Basque.