2023 Madison Stakes Odds & More Races From Keeneland

Headlining this Saturday’s Keeneland card is the G1 2023 Madison Stakes. A seven-furlong sprint for fillies and mares, the race looks loaded with Maryquitecontrary, Yuugiri and Goodnight OIive all expected to feature heavily.


Sticking with the girls and it’s the turn of the three year old fillies in the Appalachian Stakes. A Grade 2 contest, Pleasant Passage for Shug McGaughey will be making her first appearance since finishing second in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf and looks to be the one they will all need to beat.

The shortest graded race on Saturday’s card comes in the form of the Grade 2 Shakertown Stakes. A fast and furious race is guaranteed but it will be the Brad Cox trained Caravel who will be looking to cement her class. Last seen when winning the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, she will be looking to lay down a marker ahead of what could be an exciting campaign.

Rounding out the graded action is the Grade 3 Commonwealth Stakes. A seven furlong dash for horses aged four and over, the majority of the field head to Keeneland with questions to answer. Hoist The Gold for Dallas Stewart is winless in his last ten starts but has shown some signs of life thanks to a third place finish in the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes and a fourth place finish in the Grade 3 Mineshaft Stakes and looks to be a likely contender.

Madison Stakes

Grade 1, Dirt, seven furlongs, open to fillies and mares aged four and over. Total prize pool: $600,000

One of the best races of the year takes place this Saturday at Keeneland in the form of the Madison Stakes. A Grade 1 contest, the race was first run back in 2002 and has been won by some fantastic horses.

This 2023 Madison Stakes could be the best Madison that has ever been run with three quality horses likely to head the list of betting.

Goodnight Olive returns to the scene of her greatest triumph where she showed a high class field a clean set of hoofs to dominate last year’s Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint. A winner of her last six starts, she showed in her Breeders’ Cup success that she is one of the best horses currently in training.

Campaigned cleverly last year by trainer Chad Brown, this will only be Goodnight Olive’s third Grade 1 start. She currently boasts a perfect record when competing at the highest level. Ominously for the rest of the field, she seems to love the Keeneland dirt and has won both previous starts at the track. This will be her fifth start at seven furlongs, and she has won the previous four by almost twenty lengths.

Looking to dent Goodnight Olive’s perfect Grade 1 record will be the Rodolphe Brisset trained Yuugiri. Highly thought of last season, it didn’t quite click as she could only finish thirteenth in last season’s Kentucky Oaks.

Following that poor result, connections decided to give her seven months off and she didn’t return to the track until December 2022. Dropped down in distance and pitched into Allowance company, she showed all of her class to win easily. She then had another couple of months off the track but returned in February to win the Carousel Stakes comfortably.

This 2023 Madison Stakes will see her return to the highest level of competition since that disappointing Oaks appearance. Whilst she has plenty to prove against a horse of Goodnight Olive’s caliber, she looks to be one of the best alternative selections.

Another horse looking to serve it to the favorite will be the Joseph Catanese trained Maryquitecontrary. She heads into this race fresh off the back of five successive victories and has only been beaten once in her career.

Whilst she doesn’t have form to rival that of Goodnight Olive, she has beaten better and better opposition with each start and arrives at Keeneland having won the Grade 2 Inside Information Stakes impressively. That performance had all the hallmarks of Grade 1 horse but whether she has the speed or stamina to stick close to Goodnight Olive remains to be seen.

Caramel Swirl for Bill Mott returns to Keeneland for the third time in her career and currently boasts a perfect record at the track. A wildly inconsistent horse, it has been two years since she last appeared at Keeneland where she won the Grade 2 Lexus Raven Run Stakes.

Since that win only one other victory has followed. She proved no match for Goodnight Olive in lasty year’s Grade 1 Ballerina Stakes but still finished ahead of some good horses in second. She then bombed when the heavy favorite last time out in Stakes company and was only able to finish fourth. Whilst a win looks unlikely, she has shown she is more than capable of running well in races of this nature and could be a decent long shot bet.

2023 Madison Stakes Odds & Betting Prediction

A really exciting race looks to be in store in this year’s Madison. Goodnight Olive is the buzz horse of the contest and looks to be the one they will all need to beat. Yuugiri and Maryquitecontrary will rate as likely dangers but have class to prove with the favorite.

Cocktail MomentsBrian HernandezKenny McPeek +2000
Goodnight OliveIrad OrtizChad Brown -250
SocietyFlorent GerouxSteve Asmussen +300
YuuguriRicardo Santana JrRodolphe Brisset +1000
MaryquitecontraryLuca PaniciClaude McGaughey +600

Appalachian Stakes

Grade 2, Turf, one mile, open to three-year-old fillies. Total prize pool: $400,000

A field of eight horses are due to canter down to post for this year’s Appalachian Stakes with the Shug McGaughey trained Pleasant Passage expected to be the favorite for this year’s renewal.

When last seen, Pleasant Passage ran a stormer of a race finishing second in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf and if she can bring that form into this contest, she could be the one to be on.

Lightly raced, she has won two of her first three career starts and was only narrowly beaten by the classy Meditate in the Fillies Turf.

Cairo Consort is looking to take on Pleasant Passage once again having finished just one place behind her in the Fillies Turf. She does arrive at Keeneland with race fitness on her side having raced three times since the Breeders’ Cup back in November. A winner of the Grade 3 Sweetest Chant Stakes she failed to back that up when finishing a narrow third in the Herecomesthebride Stakes.

Finishing ahead of Cairo Consort that day was Papilio. Bred in Ireland, she made the move to Mark Casse late last year and ran with promise on her first start for her new stable when denied by just a nose that day in the Here Comes The Bride. It is also worth noting that she has decent Grade 1 form back in Ireland and that should make her a real contender here.

Be Your Best is another who has already squared off against Pleasant Passage but has finished behind the Shug McGaughey trained runner both times they have previously met. Like Pleasant Passage she was last seen when competing in the Fillies Turf and could only finish ninth. For her to poke her head in front she would have had to have made serious improvements whilst having been off the track.

Appalachian Stakes Odds & Betting Pick

Plenty of horses look set to renew rivalries in this year’s Appalachian Stakes. Looking to cement her class will be Pleasant Passage but she will have a fight on her hand to land the spoils here. Cairo Consort and the improving Papilio will give the likely favorite a tough race.

BeautifulnavigatorJames GrahamKenny McPeek +1200
PapilioJavier CastellanoMark Casse +600
Cairo ConsortIrad OrtizTodd Pletcher +300
Heavenly SundayFlorent GerouxBrad Cox +800
Alpha BellaJoel RosarioTodd Pletcher+450
Be Your BestLuis SaezHoracio De Paz +800
Pleasant PassageTyler GaffalioneClaude McGaughey +250
SabalenkaRicardo SantanaD Whitworth Beckman +3000
Well IntoVincent CheminaudJonathan Thomas +1000

Shakertown Stakes

Grade 2, Turf, five and a half furlongs, open to horses aged three year and over. Total prize pool: $350,000

The third race in our Keeneland preview see’s yet another horse returning to the track for the first time since the Breeders’ Cup. Caravel pulled off a shock at a huge price to land the spoils in Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint last November, and many pundits are fascinated to see whether the Brad Cox trained runner can land another big race here. A winner of her last two starts, both of those victories have come on the Keeneland turf, and she must be considered as one of the big race favorites.

Whenever it comes to sprint racing it is always worth paying attention to any Wesley Ward trained runner. Ward has won this race in each of the last two seasons and has won the contest four times in total. This year he saddles Arrest Me Red who has won two Stakes races and finished second in the Grade 1 Jaipur Stakes last season.

He is also making his first appearance since last year’s Turf Sprint where he could only finish eighth. Despite that poor performance he will rate as a danger to all.

Artemus Citylimits is another in the field who brings form from the Turf Sprint. In what was a bit of a blanket finish that day, he flashed home late to finish fifth and will be hopeful of building upon that effort here.

Oceanic finished ahead of Artemus Citylimits in the Woodford Stakes but saw those placings reversed at the Breeders’ Cup. He looks to have plenty on his hands if he is to prove successful here.

The beauty of a race like the Shakertown Stakes is that races of this distance are usually wide open. One horse who could be worth a play at a big price is Stitched. A winner of three of his last four starts, this will be the biggest race of his career by some margin. However, he will arrive at Keeneland in really good heart and could be worth a look at a big price.

Shakertown Stakes Odds & Betting Pick

A busy field will head down to post for this year’s Shakertown Stakes and it looks like it will be Caravel who is the horse to beat. Arrest Me Red for Wesley Ward has to be taken very seriously and it wouldn’t be a shock to see Oceanic bounce back to form and run a big race.

Johnny UnleashedGerardo CorralesEric Foster +3000
Mark of the ZJavier E.T BairdJose Rodriguez +2000
Artemus CitylimitsIrad OrtizMichael Maker +500
Bakers BayJoseph TalamoThomas Drury +1000
Mister MmmmmCorey LanerieWayne Catalano +600
All In SyncBrian HernandezSteve Asmussen +2000
Noble EmotionLuis SaezHoracio De Paz +3000
CaravelTyler GaffalioneBrad Cox +160
Bad Beat BrianChristopher EmighBrittany Vanden Berg +1500
OceanicEdgar MoralesJordan Blair +1500
StitchedFlorent GerouxGregory Foley +3000
Arrest Me RedJoel RosarioWesley Ward +450
Nobody ListensJoseph RamosTim Eggleston +2000

Commonwealth Stakes

Grade 3, Turf, seven furlongs, open to horses aged four and over. Total prize pool: $300,000

Ten horses will head down to post for this year’s Commonwealth Stakes, and it looks like a race that is fascinatingly poised.

Having been drawn in gate number 1, the Dallas Stewart trained Hoist The Gold will be looking to build on some solid recent outings. Arguably the unluckiest horse in training, Hoist The Gold has finished inside the places in four of his last seven starts. A winless drought is concerning, but his fourth-place finish in the Mineshaft Stakes and third place finish in the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes suggests he has a major role to play here.

In the Malibu Stakes, Hoist The Gold was able to finish ahead of the Wesley Ward trained Nakatomi who many believe has a great chance of success here.

Nakatomi has a good record at Keeneland having won two of his three starts at the track. Yet to land a race of this quality, he heads into the race having placed third in the Grade 3 Tom Fool Handicap and is another big contender for this year’s renewal.

One of the most fascinating horses on the card has to be the Peter Millar trained Get Her Number. A former Grade 1 winner back in 2020 when successful in the American Pharoah Stakes, he has then followed that performance up with two other Grade 1 placed finishes.

Whilst his career hasn’t reached the heights that his two-year-old season promised, he heads into the race following a third place finish in the San Carlos Stakes and is in decent enough form to win a race of this type.

Run Classic, is another who heads into this year’s Commonwealth Stakes renewal following a solid showing in Grade 3 company last time out. His third behind Pioneer of Medina in the Mineshaft Stakes is decent form and he could be a real outside contender.

For those looking to play a horse at a bigger price, an option to look at could be Heart Rhythm. Yet to race in Graded Stakes company, he heads into the race fresh off a dominant performance last time out in Allowance company. He has shown flashes of potential in his career and could be a real live outside threat to all in the field.

Commonwealth Stakes Odds & Betting Tip

Whilst much of the noise will be focused on Hoist The Gold and Nakatomi, the value play in this race could be Get Her Number. No other horse can match his Grade 1 form and he comes into the contest following a decent showing last time out. This doesn’t look to be the strongest of Grade 3 races and he looks to have a great chance of landing a race of this nature.

Hoist The GoldBrian HernandezDallas Stewart +800
NakatomiTyler GaffalioneWesley Ward +200
Get Her NumberJoel RosarioPeter Miller +400
Heart RhythmRafael BejaranoJohn Ortiz +1000
LegionnaireJavier CastellanoThomas Drury +2000
SpanksterDavid CabreraWayne Lukas +3000
Run ClassicReylu GutierrezBret Calhoun +300
Pro OxidantCorey LanerieEddie Kenneally +1200
Here Mi SongAlex AchardWilliam Stinson +1000
Long Range ToddyJunior AlvaradoDallas Stewart +3000

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