04/17/2013 2:57PM

Kentucky Oaks field looks set as Live Lively drops out

Tom Keyser
Live Lively will ship Sunday from her winter base in south Florida to Belmont Park.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Live Lively has been declared out of the Kentucky Oaks, clearing a spot on the eligibility list for Pure Fun and pretty much firming up the lineup for the May 3 filly classic at Churchill Downs.

Live Lively, a distant second in the March 30 Gulfstream Park Oaks to Dreaming of Julia, will be pointed instead to the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes on the May 17 Preakness eve card at Pimlico, trainer Mark Hennig said Wednesday via Twitter.

After discussing the Oaks at length with owner Lee Lewis, Hennig said they both believed it was more prudent to focus instead on a summer campaign. Live Lively will ship Sunday from her winter base in south Florida to Belmont Park, he added.

Meanwhile, Pure Fun will remain in the lineup as the only filly versus 10 colts and geldings Saturday in the Grade 3, $200,000 Coolmore Lexington Stakes at Keeneland, despite apparently not needing any more eligibility points and despite having drawn the far outside post in the 1 1/16-mile Polytrack race.

The Lexington offers 34 points (20-8-4-2) for Kentucky Derby eligibility. Those points also can be used by a filly toward eligibility into the Derby or Oaks.

Pure Fun “needs the race,” said her trainer, Ken McPeek. “I’d much rather run her once than work her twice.”

As of Wednesday, these are the 14 probables for the Oaks: Beholder, Rose to Gold, Unlimited Budget, Dreaming of Julia, Close Hatches, Flashy Gray, Princess of Sylmar, Fiftyshadesofhay, Midnight Lucky, Silsita, Manuka Honey, Seaneen Girl, Promise Me More, and Pure Fun.

Besides Live Lively, among the other fillies who have made the eligibility cutoff for the Oaks but have been declared out or unlikely to run by their connections are Emollient, Iotapa, and Ciao Bella Luna.

Churchill is listing just one other filly, Broken Spell, as still wanting into the race. Oaks entries will be drawn April 30.

Lou Doya More than 1 year ago
Louie Carnesco More than 1 year ago
Dreaming of Julia is gonna run them off their feet
AZ Wildcat More than 1 year ago
Midnight Lucky will destroy this field in a new track record.
edb More than 1 year ago
Nice race and tough call. Will set up nice DD for derby. DOJ won't dictate the race and just might bounce a little this time. Some smoking horses in this race and exacta is tough and tri should be outstanding. What happened to Executive Privilige?
Mark More than 1 year ago
Bob pushed too hard trying to win eclipse award .
John More than 1 year ago
I wonder how many of these fillys would do well in the Derby, Julia, Midnight Lucky, Pure Fun, Unlimited Budget, Close Hatches..........................wow ! Next year they should allow fillys to use their points in either race !
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
does that mean colts can run in the oaks?
Debra Medlock More than 1 year ago
Just looking at history. The Derby isn't restricted to colts and geldings only. I hope they open the points system to all graded 3 yr old races. It's hurting tracks which could benefit from having races qualify.
John More than 1 year ago
Why is Baffert running Fiftyshadesofhay............? The horse has been chewed up and spit out by Beholder numerous times, plus she isnt the best Baffert has in the field, why waste a horse in a race she cant win ? Midnight Lucky is a monster, but this field is full of runners, should be a great great race !
fourroads910 More than 1 year ago
Real handicappers know that DOJ is at at least 6 lengths better than this field an should be running in the derby instead! Most haters talk about bounce most horse dont bounce second race off the say off they more likely go foward
Eric More than 1 year ago
DOJ's race at Gulfstream was historical in nature, and spectacularly better than anything she had ever run. Bounce or no bounce, there is no chance on earth that she will come close to repeating that effort.
Wonderagain More than 1 year ago
I'll believe it when I see it. Pletchers horses, whether a filly or a colt, have looked like freaks in FL, then come back down to earth in the big race. That's if the horse makes the race at all. Wouldn't be the least surprised if DOJ is declared from the race btwn now and post time. Though every year I hope it isn't the case.
jttf More than 1 year ago
live lively and emollient both got beat by more than 19 lengths by DOJ and dont want a 2nd chance. emollient just toasted a grade 1 group by many lengths, while running against the closers bias. fillies are a lot more consistant than the boys. examples-black cavier, zenyatta and the great peppers pride had huge streaks lately. DOJ may have a long streak this year. this race has at least 7 fillies who should be running in the derby. there is a lot of speed in here. i say the kentucky oaks beyer is going to be at least 6 points higher than the kentucky derby.
Ian GW More than 1 year ago
Better bunch than the males. I gotta keep with Close Hatches my future bet.
Roy Roy More than 1 year ago