Top Horse Racing Picks for Friday, May 6, 2022

| May 5, 2022 1:36 pm PDT

Talk about some good horse racing—it’s Kentucky Oaks Day at Churchill Downs, and we’ve got seven graded stakes races to assess (including the Kentucky Oaks itself), so we’d better get right to it.

Don’t forget to check out the full race-card and all the odds at one of our recommended horse racing betting sites.

Good luck!

Kentucky Oaks Day Stakes Races at Churchill Downs

Race five — the  Modesty Stakes (Grade III)

This is a $250,000 purse, 1-1/8 miles turf race for fillies and mares four years old and upward.

I like the 9/5 morning-line favorite for this race—Bleecker Street, ridden by Flavien Prat.

This four-year-old gray roan filly won all five of her career starts, including her two most recent runs, Endeavour Stakes (Grade III) in February and the Hillsborough Stakes (Grade II) in March, both at Tampa Bay Downs. She’s proven she can best this talented field of nine.

Horse racing veteran Chad C. Brown trains Bleecker Street for owner Peter M. Brant.

Race six — the La Troienne Stakes (Grade I)

This is a $750,000 purse, 1-1/16 miles dirt track race for fillies and mares four years old and upward. My money’s on the second-favorite (at 2/1): Pauline’s Pearl, with top jockey Joel Rosario in the irons.

In a tightly matched field of seven, this four-year-old gray roan filly has what it takes. For the record, Pauline’s Pearl moneyed ten of her twelve career starts, winning four.

Hall of famer Steven M. Asmussen trains Pauline’s Pearl for Stonestreet Stables LLC.

Incidentally, she’ll most likely see real competition from the other horse Asmussen has in this race—the 6/1 third-favored Jilted Bride, with Luis Saez aboard.

A five-year-old bay mare, Jilted Bride has finished in the money all 16 of her career starts, winning four. Depending on her odds just before the race, she may be worth a value show bet.

Asmussen trains Jilted Bride for owners Bradley Thoroughbreds, Tim Cambron, Anna Cambron, Brady Carruth, and Zane Carruth.

Race seven — the Alysheba Stakes (Grade II)

This is an $500,000 purse, 1-1/16 miles dirt track run for four-year-olds and upward. As much as I want to bet on 2020 Kentucky Derby contender Max Player to win this race, I have to stick with the , I have to stick with the morning-line’s 9/5 favorite, Olympiad, piloted by Junior Alvarado.

This four-year-old bay colt finished seven of his eight career starts in the money, including the Mineshaft Stakes (Grade III) in February and the New Orleans Classic Stakes (Grade II) in March, both at Fair Grounds. He’s posted triple-digit speed figures for his last six races.

Longtime horse racing veteran William I. Mott trains Olympiad for owners Grandview Equine, Cheyenne Stable, LLC, and LNJ Foxwoods.

Race eight  — the Edgewood Stakes (Grade II)

This is a $500,000 purse, 1-1/16 miles turf race for three-year-old fillies. I’m betting my two dollars on the 5/2 morning-line favorite, Dolce Zel, ridden by Irad Ortiz, Jr.

This three-year-old French import moneyed three of her four career starts, winning two, including the Florida Oaks (Grade III) at Tampa Bay in March. She also finished second in the Appalachian Stakes (Grade II) last month at Keeneland.

Chad C. Brown—who also trains Spicer, the second-favored entry in this race—trains Dolce Zel for owners Madaket Stables LLC, Michael Dubb, Robert V. LaPenta.

Race nine  — the Eight Belles Stakes (Grade II)

This is a $500,000 purse, seven-furlong run on the dirt track for three-year-old fillies. I’m calling this race for the second-favored (at 7/2) Marissa’s Lady, piloted by top jockey Rafael Bejarano.

This gray roan filly moneyed all six of her career starts, winning five, including her initial maiden ad four Black Type stakes races. Her single miss was a second-place finish in the Cincinnati Trophy Stakes (Black Type) in March at Turfway Park.

Regularly ranked among the top 100 horse racing trainers in North America, William E. Morey trains Marissa’s Lady for the Boone Family Trust and the Tillema Family Trust.

Race ten — the Twin Spires Turf Sprint Stakes (Grade II)

This is a $500,000 purse, 5-1/2 furlongs turf run for three-year-olds and upward. My money’s on the second-favored (at 5/1) Caravel, with Tyler Gaffalione in the irons.

This five-year-old mare is a standout in this crowded 13-horse field. She’s moneyed eleven of her 13 career starts, winning eight. Of the six graded stakes races she’s won, the most significant was the Caress Stakes (Grade III) at Saratoga last July.

Breeders’ Cup veteran Brad H. Cox trains Caravel for owners Qatar Racing, Marc Detampel, and Madaket Stables LLC.

Race eleven — the Kentucky Oaks (Grade I)

This is a $1,250,000 purse, 1-1/8 miles dirt track run for three-year-old fillies. My money’s on the third-favored (at 4/1) Echo Zulu, with Joel Rosario aboard.

This bay filly won all five of her career starts, which is a quality I like to see in horses I bet on. And aside from her maiden victory, all of her wins have been in graded stakes, including three Grade I matches—the Spinaway Stakes in September at Saratoga, the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies at Del Mar in November, and the Frizette Stakes at Belmont Park in October.

Does Echo Zulu pwn this horse race? Magic 8-Ball says “Yes!”

Steven M. Asmussen trains Echo Zulu for owners L and N Racing LLC and Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC.

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J.W. Paine

J.W. Paine is one of the most experienced writers at He's written for television and the printed media, and is a published novelist (as Tom Elliott).

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