Chad Brown Sends Out Three in Wonder Again Stakes
Belmont Stakes week at Belmont Park is always a memorable time packed with top-notch stakes races, and the action this year gets started on Thursday with an excellent card highlighted by the $200,000 Wonder Again Stakes (gr. III) for three-year-old fillies.Held at nine furlongs over the inner turf course, the Wonder Again serves as a local prep for the $1 million Belmont Oaks (gr. I) next month, and in fact two fillies (Lady Eli and New Money Honey) have already completed the Wonder Again/Belmont Oaks double in the four years since the races were first held.
Both Lady Eli and New Money Honey were trained by , who will be represented by three starters in the Wonder Again: Altea, Mighty Scarlett, and Significant Form. The latter is clearly the most accomplished of the trio, having won the Miss Grillo Stakes (gr. III) at Belmont last fall before finishing a good fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (gr. I). The daughter of Creative Cause opened her 2018 season with a powerful 6 ¼-length win in the Memories of Silver Stakes at Aqueduct and appears poised for a strong season.
However, Altea is also a talented filly, having finished third by just a neck in the Florida Oaks (gr. III) two starts back, and Mighty Scarlett looked like a promising runner when winning a 9.5-furlong maiden race at Keeneland by 4 ½ lengths, so there’s no guarantee that the most accomplished of Brown’s runners will prove to be the fastest on Saturday.
Andina Del Sur, winner of the Florida Oaks for trainer Tom Albertrani, could provide the stiffest competition for the Brown fillies. The daughter of Giant’s Causeway could only manage a fourth-place finish in the Ashland Stakes (gr. I) last time out, but that race was on dirt, and she’ll be returning to turf for the Wonder Again.
Camila Princess, a stakes winner with four victories from five starts on turf, ships in from Florida while Animosity—2-for-2 thus far in her career—travels from California, where she won an allowance race over the Tapeta track at Golden Gate Fields last time out. Coming from even further away is Armoricaine, who has two wins and pair of seconds from five starts in France.
Completing the field are Spinning Top, winner of the Tomboy Stakes at Belterra Park; Daddy Is a Legend, winner of the Jimmy Durante Stakes (gr. III) last November; and La Signare, runner-up in a Keeneland allowance race after breaking her maiden in France.
The Wonder Again is the eighth race of the day, with a post time of 5:48 p.m. Eastern.