The Fierce Battle Unfolds: Secret Oath Takes on Nest in CCA Oaks Showdown

Breaking Down the Grade 1 CCA Oaks at Saratoga

There’s an air of excitement surrounding the Grade 1 CCA Oaks at Saratoga this Saturday, as the field boasts some of the top talent in the three-year-old filly division. While there are five contenders in the race, we shouldn’t let ourselves get overwhelmed by numbers. Instead, let’s explore the intriguing details and the captivating storylines that make this race so compelling.

Secret Oath vs. Nest: A Clash of Kentucky Oaks Titans

One of the most enticing aspects of this year’s CCA Oaks is the showdown between Secret Oath and Nest. These two fillies were the top-two finishers in the Kentucky Oaks, cementing their status as the cream of the crop in a talented sophomore class. Now, they face off again, each aiming to prove their superiority and solidify their standing as the best in their division.

An Unbeaten Streak and a Sweeping Ambition

Secret Oath enters the CCA Oaks with an impressive track record, having never tasted defeat against her fellow fillies. Her dominant performance in the Kentucky Oaks showcased her undeniable talent and marked her as a filly to be reckoned with. Trained by the legendary D. Wayne Lukas, Secret Oath now sets her sights on achieving a rare double by becoming the first filly since Ashado in 2004 to sweep the Kentucky Oaks-CCA Oaks combination. Lukas, no stranger to such accomplishments, expressed his confidence in Secret Oath’s ability to replicate her previous success.

A Challenging Preakness Stakes and a Lesson Learned

Following Secret Oath’s Kentucky Oaks triumph, she faced a formidable test in the Preakness Stakes, taking on colts just 15 days later. Unfortunately, the trip proved to be a crucial factor in her performance, as she encountered trouble at the start and endured a wide journey on the track. Despite a valiant rally, she finished fourth, falling short of victory. Lukas acknowledged the significance of a good trip for a filly competing against colts and emphasized the need for Secret Oath to prove her superiority once again.

Nest’s Stellar Consistency and Post-Belmont Readiness

Nest, the Kentucky Oaks runner-up, demonstrated her remarkable consistency in the Belmont Stakes, finishing a mere three lengths behind the winner. Maintaining her impeccable record of hitting the board in all her starts, Nest has proven to be a formidable competitor. Trainer Todd Pletcher expressed confidence in Nest’s ability to handle the challenges of the CCA Oaks, highlighting her excellent post-Belmont form and readiness to return to the track sooner rather than later.

A Clash of Oaks Exacta in the CCA Oaks

The rarity of the Oaks exacta rematch in the CCA Oaks adds an extra layer of intrigue to this already thrilling race. In the past 25 years, this meeting of the top-two finishers from the Kentucky Oaks has only occurred twice. Five years ago, Oaks winner Abel Tasman narrowly defeated Elate in a memorable CCA Oaks. Similarly, this year’s CCA Oaks brings together Secret Oath and Nest, reigniting the suspense and anticipation of another epic battle between these standout fillies.

Plotting the Path to the Eclipse Award

The outcome of the CCA Oaks holds tremendous implications beyond this specific race. It also factors into the race for the prestigious Eclipse Award for Champion 3-Year-Old Filly. In recent years, three of the last six CCA Oaks winners have gone on to receive this esteemed accolade: Songbird in 2016, Abel Tasman in 2017, and Monomoy Girl in 2018. This race serves as a pivotal moment in determining the front-runners for this coveted award, adding an additional layer of significance to an already high-stakes event.


As the anticipation builds for the Grade 1 CCA Oaks at Saratoga, racing enthusiasts eagerly await the clash between Secret Oath and Nest, two exceptional fillies who have already proven their worth in the Kentucky Oaks. With intriguing storylines, a rich history, and the potential to define the championship landscape, this race promises to be a spectacle for fans and participants alike. The stage is set for an exhilarating showdown that will leave a lasting impression on the path to greatness.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How many fillies are participating in the CCA Oaks?

A: There are five fillies competing in the Grade 1 CCA Oaks at Saratoga.

Q: Which filly has an unbeaten record against her own sex?

A: Secret Oath boasts a flawless record against her fellow fillies, having never been defeated.

Q: Who is the trainer of Secret Oath?

A: Secret Oath is trained by the renowned Hall of Famer, D. Wayne Lukas.

Q: Which filly nearly won the Belmont Stakes?

A: Nest, the runner-up in the Kentucky Oaks, finished a close third in the Belmont Stakes.

Q: How many CCA Oaks winners have gone on to win the Eclipse Award for Champion 3-Year-Old Filly?

A: Over the past six years, three CCA Oaks winners have subsequently received the prestigious Eclipse Award.

Doug I. Jones

Doug I. Jones

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