Bare Necessities scored a convincing win in Friday night's $300,000 Indiana Breeders' Cup Oaks (gr. III) on a muddy track at Hoosier Park.
The Kentucky-bred grey daughter of Silver Deputy out of Shrewd Vixen (by Spectacular Bid) settled outside off the early pace while in good striking position, made a wide move on the far turn and collared pace-setting Erica's Smile as the field of nine turned for home. She easily passed the leader and drew off to an eight-length triumph.
The Southern California connections of trainer Wally Dollase and rider Jose Valdivia Jr. made the trip a successful one for owner/breeder George Middleton and his Iron County Farms, Inc. The winner's share was worth $183,840.
"She (Bare Necessities) had never been on an off track before and that was the only concern coming into the race," said Valdivia. "Wally (Dollase) and her connections have done a super job with her. This is the second time I've ridden her and I think that helped me tonight. She really ran a big race."
Bare Necessities now has three wins in seven outings this season after only one start last year. She also made her first start out of the state of California for Dollase.
"At Hollywood Park, I was able to train her under the lights," said Dollase. "Fortunately, between 5:30-6:30 in the morning, the lights are on. I don't know if it made any difference but I knew we would be under the lights here so I thought it would be a good idea. Other than that, I was training her as I normally would. She arrived here four days before the race and has eaten well and felt well leading up to the race. Tommy Nelson, who had been exercising her during her days here, said that she felt terrific."
Fellow California shipper Erica's Smile continued her streak with no finish worse than second in five career outings. Trained by Jeff Bonde and owned by Hajji Farm, she heads back to the West Coast with a strong itinerary ahead of her.
"She (Erica's Smile) ran perfectly tonight, and I couldn't ask for anything better," said Gonzalez, who has ridden her in all eight of her outings. "I felt Bare Necessities coming on in the backstretch, but this filly continued to run strong. My filly never gave up. The other filly just ran faster down the stretch."
The handle for the 11-race card was $1,314,838, the second largest total for an Indiana Breeders' Cup Oaks night. Attendance for the evening was 2,061, which was the fourth largest attendance for the race in the eight-year history of the event.
The winning time for 1 1/16 mile on a muddy track was 1:45.83.
The 5-2 favorite, Bare Necessities paid $7.20, $4.40 and $3.40. Erica's Smile held on to the place and returned $6.600 and $4.20. Tarnished Lady closed late to take third, 2 1/4 lengths farther back, and paid $3.20 for the show.
Lost at Sea was scratched.