08/16/2011 5:05PM

Alabama Stakes features top filly 3-year-olds


Opinions have been mixed on the quality of the 3-year-old male division this year, with the Triple Crown races being split three ways and no dominant horse yet to emerge. The same cannot be said of the 3-year-old fillies, however, where the depth of quality has been on display from the start of 2011.

This Saturday at Saratoga, the powerful 3-year-old filly division takes another step toward deciding a champion with a heavily stacked field in the 2011 Alabama Stakes. The Grade 1 route (1 1/4 miles) boasts a purse of $500,000. Four of the top 10 fillies in Mike Watchmaker's latest divisional rankings were in Wednesday's draw for the Alabama. Here's a look at the top contenders, with videos of their top recent races to help you get a head start on your handicapping.

It's Tricky vs. Plum Pretty

The definitive race to watch heading into the Alabama is the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks at Saratoga on July 23. Three of the top four fillies in the division finished in the top three spots, with It's Tricky and Kentucky Oaks champion Plum Pretty waging an epic duel down the stretch and Royal Delta finishing third. It's Tricky won and paid $8.60, and this was after winning the Grade 1 Acorn at Belmont a month earlier at 10-1. Safe to say she won't go off at such an appealing price on Saturday after winning Grade 1 stakes in consecutive races.

It's Tricky wins Acorn

On June 11, It's Tricky burst onto the national scene with a stunning defeat of Turbulent Descent in the Acorn on the Belmont Stakes undercard. It's Tricky pulled away down the stretch and won convincingly with a 104 Beyer Speed Figure.

Royal Delta wins Black-Eyed Susan

Royal Delta posted a 100 Beyer Speed Figure in winning the Black-Eyed Susan at Pimlico.

Oh Canada

Having dominated the Woodbine meet, Inglorious may be coming south of the border for the Alabama. She won all three of her races on the Polytrack surface at Woodbine, including the Queen's Plate against males on June 26. David Grening: Inglorious successful at Alabama distance

St. John's River wins Delaware Oaks

If you're looking for a deep closer then check out St. John's River in the Delaware Oaks on July 9. She also rallied for second place to Plum Pretty in the Kentucky Oaks.

More video, news, picks and PPs for the 2011 Alabama Stakes.