Rail Runner

The Observations of a Horse Racing Enthusiast

A Shining Jewel: Evening Jewel, Harmonious and Check the Label

Posted by Brian Appleton on October 15, 2010

The 2010 running of the Queen Elizabeth Stakes (gr.1)at Keenland this Saturday is shaping up to be one of the best turf races of the year. In a field that includes 6 grade of group winners one filly stands out above the rest.

Evening Jewel is the deserving favorite as she enters off three consecutive graded stakes wins. Her win streak started in the Honeymoon Handicap (gr.2) at Hollywood Park in late May and except for a pair of nose defeats to the nation’s leading three-year-old filly, Blind Luck, in the Kentucky Oaks (gr.1) and Las Virgenes Stakes (gr.1) Evening Jewel would be riding a 6 race win streak.

Considered by many to be the second best filly in the nation behind only her arch nemesis Blind Luck, Evening Jewel boasts one of the most consistent and versatile records in the racing game this year. After losing the Las Virgenes Stakes (gr.1) by a hair to the fast closing Blind Luck, Evening Jewel captured the Ashland Stakes (gr.1) on synthetics as her final Kentucky Oaks prep. In the Kentucky Oaks she again fell victim to the devastating late kick of Blind Luck, finishing second by a heart-breaking nose on the Churchill Downs’ dirt surface. Switched to the turf in her next start Evening Jewel let loose with a streak of three impressive wins in graded stakes races, culminating with a victory in the Del Mar Oaks (gr.1) last out on August 21st.

This is a filly who loves to win no matter the competition, no matter the location and no matter the surface she runs on. She is the class of this field without a doubt, which, considering the amount of classy fillies entered is saying a lot.

Second choice in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes is grade 1 winner Check the Label. Check the Label enters the Queen Elizabeth riding a

four race win streak that has come exclusively in graded stakes company. In her last start the 3-year-old filly closed ground relentlessly to take the Garden City Stakes (gr.1) at Belmont Park over yielding turf by three parts of a length. The star filly has won three turf races this year at the 1 1/8 mile distance of the Queen Elizabeth and has proven to be a tough and consistent competitor.

The filly with perhaps the most potential to move forward off her latest effort is Harmonious. Grade 1 American Oaks winner Harmonious had a three race win streak cut short in her last start when finishing second to Evening Jewel in the Del Mar Oaks (gr.1) by a half length. After trailing the field around the course in the Oaks, Harmonious took to the extreme outside for the stretch run and just missed running down a late-running Evening Jewel. The Del Mar Oaks was only her second try in stakes company and she should improve off her strong effort there.

Also entered in the field are graded/group stakes winners Perfect Shirl, Snow Top Mountain and European runner Zagora. Dade Babe and La Cloche complete the field.

Evening Jewel looks the best in this field with Harmonious a close second and Check the Label third. With the quality of runners entered it is hard to separate many of them after the top three but there at least 5 good fillies with a legitimate shot at winning here.

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4 Responses to “A Shining Jewel: Evening Jewel, Harmonious and Check the Label”

  1. Susan said

    Brian,
    You are brave to take a stand in this one! A tough, tough race, I only see one throw-out and I may be wrong about that one too!
    Good Luck!

  2. HARMONIOUS was magnificent…she deserves a shot at the BC F&M Turf in her recent form.

    I can’t see how this was a useful prep for EVENING JEWEL in the BC F&M Sprint. I hope Cassidy takes a shot in the Ladies’ Classic. She can handle CD dirt and the filly who nostrilized her figures one of the short ones…EJ would be tremendous value.

    2nd through 6th were separated by only 1 3/4 lengths indicating those behind her were competitive with each other, but HARMONIOUS was the nuts.

    Great analysis.

    • I agree, Harmonious really stepped her game up a notch or two in the Queen Elizabeth!

      The Ladies Classic is my first preference for Evening Jewel as well but unfortunately it seems like they are considering her for the Filly and Mare Sprint instead. She was tremendous in the Oaks and I think she likes the longer distances.

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