Solid Field of Eight Set for Oaklawn Handicap


Express Train | Benoit

A deep field of eight–headed by 5-2 morning-line favorite and Southern Californian invader Express Train (Union Rags)–will line up for Saturday's $1-million GII Oaklawn H.

The well-built bay, second in last term's GI Runhappy Malibu S., followed a breakthrough victory with a career-best 103 Beyer Speed Figure in the GII San Pasqual S. Jan. 30 with a second-place finish after leading in the stretch in the GI Santa Anita H. Mar. 6. John Shirreffs trains the C R K Stables colorbearer.

The rail-drawn Silver State (Hard Spun), second and third in last term's GIII Lecomte S. and GII Risen Star S., enters riding a four-race winning streak for Steve Asmussen. He posted back-to-back, hard-fought local wins in the Fifth Season S. Jan. 23 and Essex H. Mar. 13, respectively.

Owendale (Into Mischief), a close second as the 4-5 favorite in the GII New Orleans Classic S. last time Mar. 20, looks to snap a seven-race losing streak while Fearless (Ghostzapper) ships in for Todd Pletcher following a win in the GII WinStar Gulfstream Park Mile S. Feb. 27.

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