News and STORIES

By My Standards Set To Return At The Oaklawn Mile

Author: Ryan Knuppel
Published: Friday April 02, 2021
There is just over a week to go before the 2021 renewal of the Oaklawn Mile, but already the excitement is building after it was revealed that By My Standards could be one of the horses involved in the race. The Oaklawn Mile will be one of the most exciting races of the day on the Arkansas Derby card at Oaklawn Park on April 10, and there are currently 34 entries for the big race.

The Grade II will be a much sought-after prize, as the field competes over 1 1/8 miles. Last year’s winner of the race was By My Standards, and he will be looking to join very select company of winning two straight installments of the race.

By My Standards Searching For History

The W. Bret Calhoun-trained horse will be looking to become only the second horse to ever win consecutive Oaklawn Handicaps, after winning at a time of 1:47.80 last year. Gay Revoke is the only previous horse that has been able to successfully defend his honor, having won it in 1965 for the second straight year. 

Styrunner has also won the Oaklawn Mile on two occasions. However, his first success came in 1957, before winning it for the second time in 1959.

The 5-year-old would have certainly been the name to get all the attention on the card, as he looks for a strong start to the 2021 season. He hasn’t been on the track since finishing seventh at Churchill Downs at the end of November last year. His record on track is very impressive though, as he won three from six starts last season.

His early season form was exceptional, as he won by three lengths in the Grade 2 New Orleans Stakes in March, before adding Grade 2 Oaklawn Mile success in May by one and three quarters over Warrior’s Charge. His most recent success on the track came in September at Churchill Downs as he won the Grade 2 Alysheba Stakes by one and three-quarter lengths from Owendale.

Field Set To Be Cut Next Week

There is still a slight chance that By My Standards could be pulled from the event, as Calhoun revealed that his entry would depend on how he feels after training at the track on Sunday afternoon. However, there is a strong sense that he looks to be on course for history next weekend.

At present, there are 34 entries for the Oaklawn Handicap, with Silver State looks set to be one of the most interesting propositions. The four-year-old for trainer Steven Asmussen has won his last three, which includes recent success in the Essex Handicap. 

He was victorious over Rated R Superstar in that race, and the 8-year-old is also among the entries for the Oaklawn Mile.

However, despite the change in trainer, as he moved to Federico Villafranco at the end of February, he is still without a win in his last 15. His last win came back in April 2018, as he won the Grade 3 Ben Ali Stakes at Keeneland.

Asmussen has further entries for the Oaklawn Mile, with Sonneman, Special Reserve, and Bankit among those. Gun It could also line up for the Oaklawn Handicap after being entered into the race. 

Todd Pletcher also has entries for the race, with Basin, Fearless, and War Stopper among those. Fearless could be one of the most interesting selections, as he returned to the track in February with a win in the Grade 2 WinStar Gulfstream Park Mile Stakes.

Michael Maker also has seven entries at present, while Brad Cox has three. Wells Bayou returned to the track for Cox’s yard by finishing third at Fair Grounds, while Owendale will be lining up for the third time in 2021 after finishing second in the Grade 2 New Orleans Classic Stakes last time out.