Derby fever may have worn off, but the hangover quickly subsides in Minnesota when live racing peeks around the corner. Yours truly is starting to catch the bug, and the backside is filling up with names old and new. While they prepare for the summer, we can prepare for Ladies’ Day at Pimlico. I know,I should be focusing on the Preakness. Another full field awaits in Baltimore, I’ll Have Another stands poised to tackle the Triple Crown, and I have some embarrassment to make up for from the Derby. HOWEVER, there is a very talented filly pointing for the Black Eyed Susan on Friday that commands my attention and will soon command yours.
I’m sure many have heard the name Mamma Kimbo, but haven’t seen much of her two-race career. Well, a little good karma is due to come the way of both this filly and her owners – Peachtree Stables own possibly the best two fillies in the country in Princess Arabella and the subject of this entry. All went according to plan this winter for the pair, both breaking their maidens impressively with Princess capturing an allowance event impressively a month or so later. The Ides of March struck the Baffert barn quickly though, forcing Mamma Kimbo to scratch from her next scheduled start with a cut on her head (or, for lack of knowledge on its whereabouts, we’ll say her face.) After stitching her up, luck seemed to turn for Peachtree with a smashing victory in the Sunland Park Oaks by Princess Arabella. She too went to the sidelines with a tendon injury though, and subsequently retired.
Mamma Kimbo fortunately returned to her winning form at Oaklawn Park, winning the Grade II Fantasy in impressive front-running fashion. Though she made the leap from maidens to stakes company without a hiccup, Baffert determined that she ran a bit too hard in the Fantasy to turn back in the Kentucky Oaks. Somehow Peachtree’s first two bullets didn’t even leave the pistol for the Oaks, leaving Option-C Sacristy to toil in seventh at 39-1. Not to be blanked in the Oaks, Baffert also sent his third option Eden’s Moon to Kentucky only to fade to last in the field of fourteen. Again, maybe a little bit of good luck is due to roll this way.
That leads us back to the Black Eyed Susan. With plenty of rest under her belt and a fresh bullet drill on the page at Pimlico, Mamma Kimbo appears to be the one to beat. The field lining up against her aren’t exactly pushovers: Todd Pletcher-trained In Lingerie making start number four in the BES, fresh off her impressive score in the Bourbonette at Turfway Park, her stablemate Disposablepleasure looking to recapture her stakes winning two-year-old form, Comely runner-up Welcome Guest, and a handful of others under consideration. Even with the quality all around her in the starting gate, it still looks like her race to lose. With a little help from the oddsmaker & the crowd on Friday, we can make some money with ‘Mamma and be ready for a profitable opening night at Canterbury. Money, money, money, money, money, that’s all we want to hear in this house….
This blog was written by Canterbury Paddock Analyst Angela Hermann. Angela Hermann is entering her second year as Canterbury’s Paddock Analyst after previously serving in a similar role at Lincoln Racecourse and Columbus Ag Park. She blogs about both local and National racing.