Saturday’s $400,000 Golden Rod S. (G2) features a showdown between a pair of Into Mischief fillies both unbeaten in two previous starts at Churchill Downs.
The likely favorite of the two is Hoosier Philly, who enters the 1 1/16-mile Golden Rod off a 7 1/2-length win in the Oct. 30 Rags to Riches S. over the same distance for trainer Tom Amoss. Victorious earlier on that card was Pretty Mischievous, who won a seven-furlong allowance test by 1 3/4 lengths for Godolphin and trainer Brendan Walsh.
Eight others were entered for the Golden Rod, including Rags to Riches runner-up T Max, who had previously beaten maiden and allowance foes in convincing fashion. Outrun to the lead in the Rags to Riches over a sloppy track, T Max might show more early zip Saturday.
Knockyoursocksoff tries dirt for the first time in the Golden Rod after finishing a distant second in the Jessamine (G2) on turf at Keeneland, while Mustang Lady and American Rockette drop from tougher spots in the Alcibiades (G1) and Frizette (G1), respectively.
Among the last-out maiden winners in the field is Stonestreet homebred Pure Pauline, a daughter of Curlin and Black-Eyed Susan (G2) winner Keen Pauline.
The Golden Rod serves as a 2023 Kentucky Oaks (G1) prep, with qualifying points of 10-4-3-2-1 awarded to the respective top five finishers. The last filly to win both the Golden Rod and Oaks was the Hall of Famer Rachel Alexandra in 2008-09.
Earlier on Saturday, Key of Life looks to win her fourth consecutive start in the $200,000 Fern Creek S. over six furlongs. The Brad Cox trainee most recently dominated the Myrtlewood S. at Keeneland in late October.