The first of three graded stakes on the card, the 1 1/16-mile Iowa Oaks is slated as the sixth race and has an approximate post time of 8:46 p.m.
Both Fiftyshadesofhay and So Many Ways will enter the Iowa Oaks off big victories in their last starts. A daughter of Pulpit, Fifthyshadesofhay prevailed by a neck in the May 17 Black-Eyed Susan (gr. I) at Pimlico Race Course. So Many Ways, by Sightseeing, rallied from seventh in the final strides to capture the May 3 Eight Belles (gr. III) at Churchill Downs.
Fifthshadesofhay, who will tote top weight of 121 pounds, is trained by Bob Baffert for Karl Watson, Mike Pegram, and Paul Weitman. Out of the Real Quiet mare Quiet Kim, she launched her 3-year-old campaign with a runaway 5 3/4-length victory in the Jan. 26 Santa Ysabel (gr. III) at the Iowa Oaks distance.
Fiftyshadesofhay will have to overcome the outside 10 post in the Iowa Oaks, where she will be ridden for the first time by jockey Martin Garcia.
Bred in Kentucky by WinStar Farm, the bay filly owns a career slate of 3-2-2 from nine starts, including on-the-board efforts in the March 2 Las Virgenes (gr. I) and April 8 Santa Anita Oaks (gr. I). The Iowa Oaks will mark her first outing at Prairie Meadows.
So Many Ways, trained by Tom Amoss for Maggi Moss, was perfect in three starts as a 2-year-old, including the Spinaway (gr. I) and Schuylerville (gr. III) at Saratoga Race Course. Out of the Dehere mare Happy Scene, the Pennsylvania-bred has only won at shorter distances, however. In her only attempt at 1 1/16 miles, she was fifth to Unlimited Budget in the March 30 Fair Grounds Oaks (gr. II).
So Many Ways will also gain a new rider in Calvin Borel for the Iowa Oaks, and the pair will break from post 2.
Seaneen Girl will be looking to redeem her disappointing unplaced efforts in her last two graded stakes attempts: the June 15 Regret (gr. IIIT) and the May 3 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I), in which she faded to ninth.
The daughter of Spring At Last displayed previous promise in her third-place effort in the Fair Grounds Oaks (gr. II), as well as her victory in the Golden Rod (gr. II) as a 2-year-old.
While she will face the challenge of breaking from the rail, perhaps gaining the services of a fresh jockey in Leandro Goncalves will benefit the filly, who enters the Iowa Oaks with a record of 2-2-2 from 10 starts for owner Naveed Chowhan and trainer Bernie Flint.
While other Iowa Oaks challengers Glorys Last Chance, Hitechnoweenie, Canticle, and Braseana may not have as accomplished resumes as the previously mentioned fillies, they do have the advantage of having already won over the Prairie Meadows surface this year.
Rounding out the field is Cloudy Vow, graded stakes-placed in the 1 1/16-mile Pocahontas (gr. II) at Churchill Downs last fall, plus allowance winner Gold Medal Dancer and maiden winner Plenty O'Toole.
$200,000 Iowa Oaks (gr. III, approximate post time 8:46 p.m. EDT), 3YO fillies, 1 1/16 miles (dirt)
PP, Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Seaneen Girl (KY), L R Goncalves, 112, B S Flint
2. So Many Ways (PA), C H Borel, 118, T M Amoss
3. Hitechnoweenie (KY), T J Thompson, 115, K G McPeek
4. Braseana (KY), B Quinonez, 115, S Young
5. Gold Medal Dancer (KY), A Birzer, 115, D K Von Hemel
6. Plenty O'Toole (KY), R Albarado, 115, C L Dickey
7. Cloudy Vow (KY), P Morales, 112, T E Hamm
8. Glorys Last Chance (KY), I Ocampo, 118, J L Hall
9. Canticle (KY), K S Tohill, 115, C A Hartman
10. Fiftyshadesofhay (KY), M Garcia, 121, B Baffert