Undefeated Lear's Princess to contest CCA Oaks(G1)
West Point Thoroughbreds' undefeated three-year-old filly Lear's Princess drew post six of seven in Saturday's $300,000 Coaching Club American Oaks(G1) at Belmont Park. Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin and West Point Thoroughbreds President Terry Finley called an audible and decided to enter Lear's Princess in the Oaks after the defection of Belmont Stakes winner Rags To Riches. Lear's Princess won the Tweedside Stakes on July 1st at Belmont on the turf in her last start. She won her debut at Keeneland on the Polytrack and subsequently rolled off back-to-back wins on the turf including the Tweedside. Lear's Princess will make her first start on a conventional dirt surface in the Oaks.
Kiaran McLaughlin said, "I called Terry (Finley) earlier this week and told him we might want to take a shot if the race falls apart. When Rags To Riches was declared out, that set a lot of people scrambling. We nominated to this race just in case something like this happened. This filly has never run on the dirt, but she trains great on the surface. We have never been against trying her on the dirt, but we did not necessarily think our first try would be in the Coaching Club. She should love the distance though, and sometimes you have to take a shot."
Terry Finley said, "I told Kiaran that this better work out the same way that the Stephen Foster worked out for Flashy Bull. We called an audible in that race and it worked out pretty well. Sometimes if you want to have success you have to go away from the playbook. We're doing that here, and we think we have a real big chance to run well."
The Coaching Club American Oaks is the eighth race on Saturday's Belmont card. Post time is scheduled for 4:44 EDT and is scheduled to be broadcast live on ESPN.