The 1 1/8-mile Gazelle, previously a grade I event, is scheduled as race 8 on the Wood Memorial (gr. I) undercard with an approximate post time of 4:39 p.m. EDT. It is worth 100 points to the winner on the road to the May 3 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
A victory would improve the ranking of Princess of Sylmar, who earned 10 points with her 7 1/2-length romp in the Jan. 5 Busanda going one mile and 70 yards before winning the 1 1/16-mile Busher in similarly impressive fashion Feb. 2.
The sophomore daughter of Majestic Warrior is undefeated in four starts since breaking her maiden by 19 lengths going a mile on the dirt at Penn National Race Course for trainer Todd Pletcher last November. Departing the outside post under jockey Javier Castellano, she should be placed about third behind the frontrunners. She shares the high impost of 122 pounds with Sagamore Farm's inside-drawn Walkwithapurpose.
Walkwithapurpose, a Maryland-bred daughter of Candy Ride trained by Ignacio Correas IV, has also gone undefeated since breaking her maiden. She makes her initial advance into the graded ranks off a 9 1/2-length victory in the Ceasar's Wish Stakes going a mile on the lead March 2 at Laurel Park. But she proved she could come from behind after stumbling at the start of the Feb. 2 Wide Country Stakes and advancing four wide from third at the half to a 4 3/4-length score. She also won the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship by eight lengths last December in her first stakes appearance. Jeremy Rose rides from the rail.
Let Me Entertain U, by 2007 Wood Memorial (gr. I) winner Nobiz Like Shobiz, is next in the weights at 120 pounds. The Tom Albertrani trainee finished third behind Princess of Sylmar in the Busher before coming back to win the March 3 Beru Stakes going a mile and 70 yards by a neck over Grand Mere when closing three-wide from third and holding sway.
Juddmonte Farms' homebred Close Hatches puts an unbeaten record on the line as well, albeit a much shorter one. The First Defence filly is two-for-two with a seven-length maiden victory earned first time out going seven furlongs for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott Jan. 26 at Gulfstream Park. That followed a strong 1 1/4-length allowance victory from gate to wire at the South Florida oval March 10.
Mott also sends out St. Elias Stable and West Point Thoroughbreds' maiden winner Watrugonnadorosie, by Curlin. The Buttonwood Group's maiden winner Red Hot Tweet, a daughter of Heatseeker trained by H. Graham Motion, completes the field.
$250,000 Gazelle Stakes (gr. II, Race 8, approximate post 4:39 p.m. EDT), 3YO fillies, 1 1/8 miles (dirt)
PP, Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Walkwithapurpose (MD), J. Rose, 122, I Correas, IV
2. Close Hatches (KY), J. Rosario, 116, W I Mott
3. Red Hot Tweet (KY), E. Castro, 116, H G Motion
4. Let Me Entertain U (KY), J.L. Ortiz, 120, T Albertrani
5. Watrugonnadorosie (KY), J. Lezcano, 116, W I Mott
6. Princess of Sylmar (PA), J. Castellano, 122, T A Pletcher