2023 Forward Gal Stakes Odds & Betting Prediction

At Gulfstream Park on Saturday we look ahead to Churchill Downs in May, as potential Kentucky Oaks contenders – including stakes-winners Atomically, Lynx and Red Carpet Ready – continue their education in the G3 2023 Forward Gal Stakes, which offers 20 RTKO qualifying points to the winner.

Forward Gal Stakes

G3, $125,000, 7f dirt, 3yo fillies, 4.17pm ET

The next step on the ‘Road to the Kentucky Oaks’ takes in the Forward Gal at Gulfstream Park on Saturday, which offers qualifying points on a 20-8-6-4-2 spread and brings together eight fillies who have yet to make a mark on the points table.

Only two runners have previous Graded experience, with the most positive belonging to Atomically, whose trainer Todd Pletcher has won the Forward Gal a record four times. She weakened in the closing stages of the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies at Keeneland to finish seventh behind divisional champion Wonder Wheel, and she was third-choice that day on the strength of an easy victory in a state-bred stakes here over a mile-sixteenth.

She cruised home by six and three-quarter lengths from Lynx, who was herself well clear of the third, and with track and trainer positives the cutback is not expected to be an issue.

Lynx had previously won two state-bred stakes here, over six furlongs and then seven, but last time out was only third in an open stakes here over a mile, although six and a half lengths clear of Arella Star – who had been last of seven, beaten more than 39 lengths, in the G1 Del Mar Debutante – in fourth spot. She may appreciate the return to sprinting in this better grade.

Further stakes-winning form comes from Twice As Sweet, who romped at Laurel Park over six furlongs before never being competitive in a similar contest at the Fair Grounds, finishing fourth. She stretches out today and that could move her up, while Red Carpet Ready is unbeaten in two after coming home clear in a stakes at Churchill Downs over six and a half furlongs, and could be part of the pace scenario.

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The other half of the field are maiden winners looking to move up. Undervalued Asset has the Chad Brown uptick and was very impressive when hosing a short field at Aqueduct over six furlongs on debut, winning eased down by eight and a quarter lengths. There’s more to come from her.

Fellow debut winner Flakes opened up to win by three lengths here over six furlongs, the same course and distance over which Apropos won by four and a half lengths second time around. Track familiarity is a positive for both, which also goes for Adeliese’s Smile, although it took her four attempts to get the job done and that’s not quite so encouraging.

Positano Sunset was third time lucky over six and a half furlongs at Churchill Downs, and had previously come off second best to subsequent G2 winner Julia Shining over seven furlongs at Keeneland; that shouldn’t be overlooked.

2023 Forward Gal Stakes Odds & Betting Prediction

HorseJockeyOdds by JazzSports
FlakesEdgard J. Zayas+2000
Twice as SweetTyler Gaffalione+1000
AtomicallyJose L. Ortiz+300
Arella StarMiguel Angel Vasquez+2000
AproposJorge Ruiz+1500
LynxJoel Rosario+600
Undervalued AssetIrad Ortiz, Jr.+350
Red Carpet ReadyLuis Saez+400
Positano SunsetJulien R. Leparoux+450
Adeliese’s SmileLeonel Reyes+3000

Impressive maiden winner UNDERVALUED ASSET comes a long way for this and can make the trip pay, with her big-name jockey/trainer combo an extra positive.

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