Trainer Todd Pletcher sends out the undefeated Off the Tracks in Saturday’s Gulfstream Park Oaks.
With all the best in the division either waiting for the Kentucky Oaks (GI) or their last preps for the first Friday in May set to be contested over the next two weeks, a decent field of seven sophomore fillies will line up for the $250,000 Gulfstream Park Oaks (GII).
Paul Reddam’s Alcibiades Stakes (GI) winner Gomo returns off a lengthy layoff and surgery to remove ankle chips and, based on past performances alone, looks best if she returns to her juvenile form. The daughter of Uncle Mo is trained by Doug O’Neill and was given a nice, long rest to recover from her injuries and come back this year with a nice freshening under her belt. She has never finished worse than third in her five-race career and owns a versatile running style that will allow her to set all the early pace or sit off the speed and wait to launch a winning move.
Off The Tracks, a daughter of Curlin, makes her first start for Todd Pletcher since majority interest in her was purchased by Newtown Annerer Stud in late February. The bay filly is undefeated in three starts and counts last year’s Schuylerville Stakes (GIII) as her most notable victory. Though she has never raced beyond six furlongs, she certainly is bred to appreciate the added ground and has found a good spot to give it a whirl. Pletcher’s go-to rider John Velazquez will be aboard and the speedy filly will break from the outside, giving her clear running room to establish a preferred spot up on or right behind the early speed.
The Gulfstream Park Oaks is the seventh race on the card with the field set to break from the gate at 2:50 p.m. EDT.
California native and lifelong horsewoman Margaret Ransom is a graduate of the University of Arizona’s Race Track Industry Program. She got her start in racing working in the publicity departments at Calder Race Course and Hialeah Park, as well as in the racing office at Gulfstream Park in South Florida. She then spent six years in Lexington, KY, at BRISnet.com, where she helped create and develop the company’s popular newsletters: Handicapper’s Edge and Bloodstock Journal.
After returning to California, she served six years as the Southern California news correspondent for BloodHorse, assisted in the publicity department at Santa Anita Park and was a contributor to many other racing publications, including HorsePlayer Magazine and Trainer Magazine. She then spent seven years at HRTV and HRTV.com in various roles as researcher, programming assistant, producer and social media and marketing manager.
She has also walked hots and groomed runners, worked the elite sales in Kentucky for top-class consignors and volunteers for several racehorse retirement organizations, including CARMA.
In 2016, Margaret was the recipient of the prestigious Stanley Bergstein Writing Award, sponsored by Team Valor, and was an Eclipse Award honorable mention for her story, “The Shocking Untold Story of Maria Borell,” which appeared on USRacing.com. The article and subsequent stories helped save 43 abandoned and neglected Thoroughbreds in Kentucky and also helped create a new animal welfare law known as the “Borell Law.”
Margaret’s very first Breeders’ Cup was at Hollywood Park in 1984 and she has attended more than half of the Breeders’ Cups since. She counts Holy Bull and Arrogate as her favorite horses of all time. She lives in Pasadena with her longtime beau, Tony, two Australian Shepherds and one Golden Retriever.