Questing: American Oaks winner going for another big-race winPICTURE: EquiSport Photos
Questing bidding for another Grade 1 win
Preview: USA, Saturday 10.46pm BST (live on ATR)
Saratoga: Alabama Stakes (Grade 1) 1m2f, dirt, 3yo fillies
FORMER John Gosden-trained Questing (Kiaran McLaughlin/ Irad Ortiz) bids to complete back-to-back Grade 1 triumphs for Godolphin in the Alabama, a prestigious $600,000 contest that has produced three of the last four champion three-year-old dirt fillies.
Godolphin's select US-based string habitually springs into life during the summer at the Spa, and this year is no different thanks to top colt Alpha and Questing, who won the Coaching Club American Oaks here on her most recent outing.
Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin won that race in 2011 with It's Tricky, who went on to finish second in the Alabama for Godolphin,
Questing is on a hat-trick, having also taken a Belmont allowance in June. "She has been doing great since the Coaching Club," said McLaughlin. "She's training well and is happy. Hopefully she can keep doing what she has been doing. We just have to hope she can repeat the performances she gave in her last two."
Morning-line favourite in a seven-runner field is Breeders' Cup runner-up Grace Hall (Tony Dutrow/Javier Castellano), returning to the scene of her sole Grade 1 victory in last year's Spinaway. Last time out she was untroubled to land the Delaware Oaks.
Zo Impressive and In Lingerie, second and third behind Questing in the CCA Oaks, also return for more.
Also on Saturday
Saratoga: Sword Dancer Invitational Hcap (Grade 1) 1m4f, turf, 3yo+ (10.13pm BST, live on ATR)
Possibly not the brainiest bit of race-scheduling to have this $600,000 event the same day as Arlington's Turf Festival but nevertheless a chance for Turbo Compressor (Todd Pletcher/Joe Bravo) to confirm his ascendancy to the top of the depleted US grass ranks.
The four-year-old has made major strides on his last two starts with front-running scores in the Colonial Turf Cup and the Union Nations Stakes at Monmouth Park. He was unchallenged on the lead in both those races; whether his rivals will be so accommodating this time around is open to question.
Turbo Compressor is joint top-weight alongside Man o'War Stakes winner Point Of Entry (Shug McGaughey/John Velazquez).
Del Mar: Del Mar Oaks (Grade 1) 1m1f, turf, 3yo fillies (1.30am Sun BST)
Lady Of Shamrock (John Sadler/Mike Smith) bids to follow up last month's victory in the American Oaks with another Grade 1 success.
Rivals are headed by fellow Grade 1 winner Eden's Moon (Bob Baffert/Rafael Bejarano), who made a winning turf debut at this venue on July 22.
Former Stan Moore-trained Mary Fildes (Simon Callaghan/David Flores) has her second run since heading to the States.