Race 9 at Oaklawn Park on Saturday, March 9 | Post Time 6:04 PM Eastern Time (5:04 Central Time)

Honeybee Stakes – Grade 3 | Purse $200,000 | One and One Sixteenth Miles | Fillies, Three Years Old

 

Motion Emotion (2) is the one to catch, and to beat, so even as the likely betting choice is a good bet, if not to win then as a key on exacta and trifecta tickets. Although it may appear horses stretching out such as Raintree Starlet (7), Ultimate Mo (8), Marathon Queen (9) and Best Kept Secret (10) may also want the early lead at any cost, they are not as fast as Motion Emotion in the early stages and unless their connections (trainer and jockey) want to waste valuable energy trying to get the lead while coming over before the first turn, they will likely be forced to take a back seat to Motion Emotion. Of those other four just mentioned, Marathon Queen (8) is removed because the slow fractions she set (23.4, 48.6) on the lead last time when winning combined with the fact she closed into second prior to that, suggest she's going to be able to relax and come on late for a piece at the least. Back to Motion Emotion, who is two-for-two as a three year old, both wins coming at Oaklawn and the first in her very first route as well as at the distance of this race. She earned 91 and 93 Equibase Figures, which are rock solid in the field as only two other horses have broken 90, and as a daughter of Take Charge Indy (a son of A.P. Indy) out of a Smart Strike Mare, if the rains come as expected she will love the muddy or sloppy surface.

Bizwhacks (4) and Ultimate Mo (8) both open at 12/1 odds and offer value not only for smaller win bets (than on Motion Emotion) but also as the main horses to use with the likely favorite on exacta and trifecta tickets, particularly as both fillies exit wins around two turns on sloppy tracks and ran as well, and as fast, as horses likely to go to post at lower odds. Bizwhacks ships in from California for Doug O'Neill off a career best effort in her FIRST ever two-turn dirt race. It came in her eighth career start but that doesn't matter. She sat in second in the early stages, was up by two at the eighth pole, then coasted to a "ridden out" win. Gutierrez accompanies her to Oaklawn and the 98 figure looks legit so if repeated, particularly if Motion Emotion doesn't fire, she can win.  Ultimate Mo also won in her two-turn debut, also on a sloppy racetrack, last month at Oaklawn. She drew off by four lengths and although she led from start to finish, her pace and speed figure combination of 74/84 tell me she's not a need the lead type. She rallied for second behind Motion Emotion in a sprint two weeks before that and earned an 88 figure for that effort. She's worked well since the race and Lukas may have a good one on his hands on the Road to the Kentucky Oaks.

Chocolate Kisses (5), Power Gal (6) and Marathon Queen (9) can be used on some exacta tickets in the second position as the may be good enough for a piece of the purse. Chocolate Kisses has earned both wins on turf and is 0 for 3 on dirt but in one race she lost the jockey, in one she finished fourth and in the other she finished 2nd. She's bred to run just fine on dirt and her best efforts yielded 86 and 85 figures. Power Gal beat Marathon Queen by a `half-length over the track at a mile in the Martha Washington Stakes last month, but that race earned the winner only an 81 figure, not stakes quality by any means. Nevertheless, Power Gal showed maturity rallying from fourth while Marathon Queen battled neck-and-neck for most of the first three-quarters of a mile, led late, and then was game in holding second.

 

Betting Strategies:

Win Bets: Motion Emotion (2) to win at odds of 9 to 5 or higher.

For a smaller amount, Bizwhacks (4) and Ultimate Mo (8) to win at odds of 3 to 1 or more.

Trifecta: In addition to, or instead of, a win bet on Motion Emotion (2), particularly if she is lower than 3 to 1 near post time:

Motion Emotion (2) over Bizwhacks (4) and Ultimate Mo (8) over ALL.

Motion Emotion (2) over ALL over Bizwhacks (4) and Ultimate Mo (8).

Exacta: Motion Emotion (2), Bizwhacks (4) and Ultimate Mo (8) over Motion Emotion (2), Bizwhacks (4), Ultimate Mo (8), Chocolate Kisses (5), Power Gal (6) and Marathon Queen (9).