May 27, 2024

Will’s Secret, Search Results register Oaks prep wins in Honeybee, Busher

Will's Secret
Will's Secret wins the Honeybee Stakes (Coady Photography)

Normally a stalk-and-pounce type, Will’s Secret found herself on the lead much earlier than usual in Saturday’s $300,000 Honeybee S. (G3) that Oaklawn Park. That proved no issue for the Will Take Charge filly, who proceeded to set a slow pace down the backside and had plenty to kick on with in the stretch to secure not only her third straight win, but also a spot in the April 30 Kentucky Oaks (G1) for owner Willis Horton and trainer Dallas Stewart.

Ridden by Jon Court, Will’s Secret prevailed by three parts of a length as the slight 2-1 favorite and returned $6.20 after completing 1 1/16 miles over a fast track in 1:44.61.

“She’s proven to me that she will look another horse in the eye and give it a competitive challenge,” Court said.

Pauline’s Pearl, an 18-1 chance exiting a maiden win at Fair Grounds, rallied well along the inside for second, while Sun Path finish another three-quarters of a length behind in third. Farther back was Oliviaofthedesert, who edged Coach for fourth. Following the latter were Tabor Hall and Willful Woman.

With 50 Kentucky Oaks qualifying points earned for the Honeybee victory, Will’s Secret virtually secured her spot in the Churchill Downs starting gate on the final Friday in April, with a final prep in next month’s Fantasy (G3) or Ashland (G1) likely. She has 60 points in total, while Pauline’s Pearl earned 20 points for second here. Sun Path earned 10 points, boosting her total to 11, while Oliviaofthedesert earned five points.

Will’s Secret placed in two of her first three outings before commencing her win streak in a Fair Grounds maiden in late December. She proved more dominant in her debut against winners, in the Jan. 30 Martha Washington S., which she dominated by more than five lengths over a muddy track. Her record now stands at 6-3-0-2, $343,600.

Bred in Kentucky by her owner, Will’s Secret is out of the Giant’s Causeway mare Girls Secret, who was produced by the Grade 2-winning Well Monied.

Busher Stakes

Making only her second career start in Saturday’s $250,000 Busher S. at Aqueduct, Search Results essentially qualified for the Kentucky Oaks when overtaking long-time leader and favorite Miss Brazil inside the final sixteenth and win the one-mile test by a half-length under Javier Castellano.

“She broke so well out of the gate. She put me in a good position to rate and I didn’t want to take that away from her and take her back,” Castellano said.

“When I asked her, she didn’t switch leads, but everything I asked for, she gave it to me. She responded. I like the way she galloped out and I think she’s going to be a good filly in the future. Two turns will be even better.”

Owned by Klaravich Stables and trained by Chad Brown, Search Results paid $6.30 after covering the distance in 1:39.75 over a fast track. She earned 50 Oaks qualifying points for the victory.

Miss Brazil, who set a pace of :24.53, :49.64, and 1:15.14 over a slow-playing track, earned 20 Oaks points while finishing 5 3/4 lengths ahead of The Grass Is Blue. That filly earned 10 points, while fourth-place finisher Laobanonaprayer earned five points. The order of finish was rounded out by Make Mischief and Mo Desserts.

Favored in her Jan. 3 debut at Gulfstream Park over six furlongs, Search Results stalked in fourth before seizing control in the stretch and rolling to a four-length triumph. She’s now earned $161,500.

A $310,000 Keeneland September yearling bred by Machmer Hall in Kentucky, Search Results is by Flatter and was reared by the Grade 3-placed Co Cola, by Candy Ride.