Jockey Javier Castellano will ride Ready and Alluring in Sunday's $500,000 Labatt Woodbine Oaks, the premier event for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies at Woodbine. Ready and Alluring could face as many as 10 challengers in the 1 1/8-mile race.
Trainer Randy Schulhofer said New York-based Castellano, who is also the regular pilot of reigning Horse of the Year Ghostzapper and grade I winner Bellamy Road, will come to Woodbine to ride the chestnut daughter of More Than Ready
, as he has in her only two career starts.
Unraced at two, Ready and Alluring broke her maiden by an impressive 16 1/2 lengths, going 1 1/16 miles, May 11 at Belmont Park.
When Ready and Alluring takes the gate for the Oaks, she'll be attempting to make history by winning the 1 1/8-mile Oaks in only her third start. The last two winners of the Labatt Woodbine Oaks, Too Late Now and Eye of the Sphynx, each had three starts prior to their triumphs in the filly classic.
Ready and Alluring will have her final tune-up for the big race on either Tuesday or Wednesday, a four-furlong move over Woodbine's main track.
Another filly to watch on Oaks day should be Dancehall Deelites. The chestnut filly, after a dull, seventh-place finish in the Fury Stakes May 8 to open her 3-year-old campaign, came back with a smashing effort, to the tune of a 13-length romp at 1 1/16-miles May 22 at the Toronto oval.
It was a performance that caught everyone associated with the horse, including conditioner Sid Attard, off-guard. "I was quite surprised at the way she ran," said Attard, who won the 2002 Oaks with Ginger Gold. "I don't know what happened."
Possible starters for the Labatt Woodbine Oaks include: Archie's Gal; Bosskiri; Charming Ruckus; Dancehall Deelites; Gold Strike; Pirouetting; Ready and Alluring; River Nore; Silver Impulse; Victorious Ami; and Whiskey and Low.