Anthony and Sam Freedman’s lightly-raced filly Elusive Express remains the favourite ahead of Thursday’s $1 million Kennedy Oaks at Flemington.
The three-year-old feature has attracted a small field of 11 for the time-honored staying test, headlined by the daughter of Jakkalberry, who won the Group 2 Edward Manifold Stakes two back over the mile.
Elusive Express followed that performance with a narrow runner-up to Yearning in last fortnight’s Thousand Guineas where she was reeled in late after making up ground.
The Freedman filly hasn’t missed the money in five starts to date and looks set to peak with the in-form Jye McNeil retaining the ride.
Last week’s Wakeful Stakes winner Willowy will also take her place in the Oaks as the $4.40 second elect.
After winning the Newcastle Cup the start prior, the Godolphin filly gapped Thursday’s rival Daisies by half a length. She does look a slight query out to 2500m, Damien Oliver – the winner of the last two editions of the Oaks – is no doubt the right man for the job.
Daisies, meanwhile, has seen plenty of support, firming from $6.00 into $4.80 with Ladbrokes bookmakers.
The Sebring filly won the Ethereal two back at Caulfield by nearly two lengths and was game to the line last week in the final stages.
Punters keen for edge should note that only one favourite has won the Oaks over the last 10 years.
Biscayne Bay sits on the next line of betting at $7.00 and warrants plenty of respect out of Ciaron Maher and David Eustace’s elite staying yard.
The three-year-old filled the minors three weeks ago in the Ethereal where she overcame a wide run in transit, and she should be plenty fit for three runs back.
No Oaks winner has paid more than $7.50 since 2003, but this could be the year a double-digit roughie finally gets the job done.
Glint of Hope ($11) has been impressive in recent runs, placing in both the Edward Manifold and the Ethereal.
The Japanese import has drawn the rails and should get the gun run under Nash Rawiller.
Tiz My Bay ($19.00) has mixed her form recently but can be forgiven on her last-start sixth in the Wakeful after missing the start.
Blackcomb ($18.00) should appreciate getting back onto a wider track like Flemington, while Morrissette appears to be working towards a breakthrough maiden win.
Click here for the 2021 Kennedy Oaks market, courtesy of Ladbrokes.com.au.