SOUTHWEST KICKS OFF SOPHOMORE SERIES AT OAKLAWN
The $250,000 Southwest S. (G3) is the top draw at Oaklawn this weekend, the first event in a three-race series for sophomores at this meeting. This venue has become arguably the most important locale on the road to the Kentucky Derby, and more can be expected this year. Monday’s feature is set to attract a nice field, including a slew of runners who exit the Smarty Jones S.
Winner Junebugred has shown nice improvement to this point for trainer Steve Hobby, and the son of Corinthian looms a big factor right back on this day. The sophomore is bred to handle this trip and wouldn’t be a surprise with another move forward. Reckless Jerry had an eventful trip in the Smarty Jones when second, and the Kenny smith pupil could be the one in here with clear sailing. Smarty Jones fourth Jake Mo and sixth, Optimizer, are also slated for this one. The latter hails from the barn of Hall-of-Fame conditioner D. Wayne Lukas and flashed good ability as a juvenile.
Impressive allowance hero Cyber Secret, sharp maiden winner Majestic Stride and Fair Grounds allowance hero Mark Valeski are also likely in this well-matched field.
The $100,000 Bayakoa S. is Saturday at Oaklawn, while the $60,000 Spring Fever S. will be run on Sunday.