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Untapable 'Unstopable' in Fair Grounds Oaks
Winchell Thoroughbreds Untapable proved no disappointment to the fans that backed her down to 1-2 favoritism in Saturday’s Grade II Fair Grounds Oaks at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.
The daughter of Tapit, who won the Grade II Rachel Alexandra Stakes here Feb. 22 by 9 ½-lengths, took this $400,000 affair by 7 ¾-lengths in facile fashion, drawing off as jockey Rosie Napravnik pleased throughout the long Fair Grounds stretch.
Five of the last nine Fair Grounds Oaks winners have gone on to victory in the Grade I Kentucky Oaks later in the spring and Untapable could be favored to make it six out of the last 10. On Saturday she was placed just off the early leaders and challenged for command entering the lane.
With her Fair Grounds Oaks tally, Untapable earned 100 points toward a start in the Kentucky Oaks and is now assured of a position in the starting gate at the Twin Spires oval assuming she remains in the fine form she showed in her two starts in New Orleans this winter. Including the points she earned in the Rachel Alexandra the Steve Asmussen trainee now has amassed a total of 160 points and Asmussen becomes the first trainer to win the Fair Grounds Oaks three times.
Untapable returned mutuels of $3, $2.20 and $2.10, toured 1 1/16-mile distance in 1:43.09 and increased her career earnings to $548,125 with her fourth win in six lifetime starts.
“She had a ton left today and I’m just thankful to Winchell Farm and Steve for having me on her today,” said Napravnik in the winner’s circle right after the Oaks. “We’ll see you all in Kentucky.”
The Estate of Clarence Scharbauer Jr’s Fiftyshadesofgold made the pace with splits of :24.29 and :48.27, could not withstand the winner when challenged but clearly saved the place, finishing 1 ¾-lengths in front of Charles Fipke’s Unbridled Forever.
Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith,aboard Fiftyshadesofgold, was impressed by the winner.
“You might have seen the best filly in the world out there,” Smith said of Untapable..
Fiftyshadesofgold paid $3.20 and $2.10 and Unbridled Forever returned $2.10.
Mary Rita and Artist Cry completed the order of finish.