AMO Racing USA’s Affirmative Lady had her final timed workout for next Friday’s $1.25 million Kentucky Oaks (G1) at Churchill Downs when she went 5 furlongs in 1:01.40 here on a fast track Thursday under exercise rider Kevin Lundie. (Click here for a video of the work.)
“That’s about what she does,” said Motion, who originally targeted Friday for the work but changed plans to avoid the possibility of forecasted rain. “I think it’s about what she did last week. Went off in :13 and finished up nicely. She’s pretty fit.”
Affirmative Lady, who clocked the same distance in 1:01 on April 21 here, is exiting a 2-length victory in the Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) Presented by FanDuel TV on April 1. Prior to earning her initial career triumph on Feb. 26 at Gulfstream, she placed in the Demoiselle (G2) and Busanda at Aqueduct.
“I feel like she belongs in the Oaks, and I think for her the (1 1/8-mile) distance is really going to help her,” Motion said. “Honestly, I wish it were a mile and a quarter because I think the further she goes the better. I think we belong to be in there. The timing’s really good. She’s had five weeks (between races), which is perfect.”
After the Gulfstream Park Oaks, Motion chose to send Affirmative Lady to his Keeneland division.
“Keeneland is where we’re stabled right now, and I find it’s a nice atmosphere to train here,” he said. “Churchill’s pretty busy, so I’m very comfortable with her being here. She'll have to be over there (early) next week, so she’ll get to gallop on the track every day. She’s had a breeze here already. I didn’t really want to move her to another track to have her next breeze. Normally I would have done it tomorrow, but with this weather coming in it looks like we’ve got to do it today. It’s not ideal, but it’s what we got.”
John Velazquez is named to ride Affirmative Lady, a graduate of Keeneland’s 2021 September Yearling Sale, in the Kentucky Oaks.
The post position draw for the Kentucky Derby (G1) Presented by Woodford Reserve and the Kentucky Oaks is Monday, May 1 from 2-3 p.m.