Delaware Oaks day stakes picks

Delaware Park hosts four stakes this Delaware Oaks day, including the Grade 3 Oaks and the Grade 3 Kent Stakes. Two of them — the Kent and the Christiana — are on the turf.

Who do our pickers like? Where’s the value? Read on to find out how the big races shape up.

Alapocas Run Stakes

Joe ParisiFrank Vespe
1.#1 Greeley and Ben (3-1)#6 Whereshetoldmetogo (4-1)
2.#3 Drafted (2-1)#1 Greeley and Ben (3-1)
3.#6 Whereshetoldmetogo (4-1)#3 Drafted (2-1)

Three-year-olds and up will go six furlongs on the main track… Win machine Greeley and Ben (20-for-33) led late last time out but could not hold off DraftedWhereshetoldmetogo has thrived with ample rest, winning five straight off layoffs, and DelPark lover could make it a half-dozen here… Drafted and Hopeful Treasure are both graded stakes winners…

This is a wide-open, high-quality heat where any of several could win. It’s also a race without a lot of front-end speed, so if you can scope out who will provide that, you might have a winner.

Christiana Stakes

Joe ParisiFrank Vespe
1.#2 Lay the Groundwork (4-1)#9 Gizala (8-1)
2.#3 Saucy Lady T (5-2)#2 Lay the Groundwork (4-1)
3.#5 Shad Nation(5-1)#1 Center Stage (12-1)

Sophomore fillies will go 1 1/16 miles on the turf… Another one that’s wide-open, you can go plenty of different ways here. It wouldn’t be a turf stake without a Chad Brown trainee in the mix, and in this case that’s Lay the Groundwork. She’ll make her second start off the bench here and ran second in allowance company in last… Gizala, an Irish-bred filly who’s raced only in France to date, makes her first North American start here for trainer Graham Motion… Saucy Lady T tries the green stuff for the first time and is  out of a turfing War Front mare… Trainer Christophe Clement scratched his other runner and ends up with only Shad Nation in this spot… Center Stage (see video above) had a troubled trip in last…

[VIDEO: Three to watch at a price]

Grade 3 Delaware Oaks

Joe ParisiFrank Vespe
1.#2 Midnight Stroll (9-2)#2 Midnight Stroll (9-2)
2.#3 Shotgun Hottie (5-2)#1 Republique (4-1)
3.#5 Morning Matcha (6-1)#3 Shotgun Hottie (5-2)

Three-year-old fillies will go 1 1/16 miles on the main track… Midnight Stroll (see video above) had a troubled trip in the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan, getting knocked sideways in the first turn and forced out widest through the backstretch and around the far turn. She made a bit of a middle move before emptying out and a cleaner trip would aid the cause… Shotgun Hottie won the Ruthless three back and has placed in two stakes, including the G3 Gazelle since… Republique is undefeated in two starts for Preakness-winning owners John and Diane Fradkin, both on the synthetic, and has been training forwardly on the dirt for trainer Saffie Joseph… Morning Matcha is another stakes winner, having scored in the Main Line four back…

[VIDEO: Three to watch at a price]

Grade 3 Kent Stakes

Joe ParisiFrank Vespe
1.#5 Wow Whata Summer (8-1)#3 Elizar (5-1)
2.#9 Tommy Bee (3-1)#5 Wow Whata Summer (8-1)
3.#3 Elizar (5-1)#6 Main Event (5-2)

Three-year-olds will go 1 1/8 miles on the turf… Wow Whata Summer (8-1) was 83-1 when he won the G2 Penn Mile in last in a strong performance. You won’t get 83-1 today, but a repeat of that could get him the money once again… Elizar (see video above) had a troubled trip in last in the G2 Pennine Ridge but was right there until tiring late. Improvement expected… Tommy Bee won a Keeneland allowance two back and validated that with a runner-up outing in stakes company in last… Main Event impressed in the Cutler Bay two back but ran just evenly in the G2 American Turf in last. He’ll need a bounceback…

[VIDEO: Three to watch at a price]