Monomoy Girl popped out of the gate for the $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) on her toes, and in a handful of strides she was in about as auspicious a spot as you could ask, given her starting spot from post 14. After angling in just behind the early pacesetter going into the first turn, she stayed in her typically forwardly placed position down the Churchill Downs backstretch until, finally, her impatience took over approaching the final turn and she decided she had enough of this stalking routine.

 

Even when she found herself in a stretch battle eerily similar to the circumstances that resulted in her lone loss, the daughter of Tapizar refused to deviate from the script laid out by her connections in November. Every waking moment the last several months has been designed to culminate with her draped in the sweet smell of victory and lilies on May 4—and not a determined rival, not a post-race claim of foul, not even her own wandering focus was going to keep the headstrong filly from holding up her end of the bargain.

 

“It was unbelievable. It worked out just the way we planned,” trainer Brad Cox said in the moments after his emotions had spilled over onto his hometown track. “It’s a dream come true. We put this plan together in November, and it just worked out.”

 

After working out a stellar trip under the heady handling of Geroux, Monomoy Girl unleashed a combination of brilliance and guts to capture the nation’s premier race for 3-year-old fillies when she fought off graded stakes winner Wonder Gadot in the stretch and survived a subsequent objection to capture the 1 1/8-mile Kentucky Oaks by half a length.

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