Juddmonte’s homebred multiple graded stakes-winning filly Bonny South looks to close out her 2021 campaign by owning the spotlight as she headlines a competitive field of seven fillies and mares entered the 106th running of the $500,000 Falls City Stakes (G2), the centerpiece on the 12-race Thanksgiving Day program at Churchill Downs on Nov. 25.
The Thanksgiving Day card at Churchill Downs has been a Louisville tradition since 1969. There are more than 7,000 turkey dinners scheduled to be served from executive chef Dave Danielson and his team. First post is 11:30 a.m. (all times Eastern) and the 1 1/8-mile Falls City will go as Race 11 at 4:22 p.m.
Trained by Brad Cox, Bonny South has knocked heads with the best of the distaff ranks for most of the year. The daughter of Munnings faced likely divisional champion Letruska three times, finishing second to her in the Ogden Phipps (G1) and Personal Ensign Stakes (G1) and most recently was third behind her nemesis in the Juddmonte Spinster (G1) at Keeneland on Oct. 10.
Bonny South bypassed the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1) and stayed at Churchill Downs for the Falls City, a race she finished second in last year as the 4-5 favorite to Three Chimneys Farm and Walking L. Thoroughbreds’ Envoutante. Installed as the 9-5 morning-line favorite, Bonny South will be ridden in the Falls City by Florent Geroux from post No. 6.
“We kept her here at Churchill since the summer and pointed her to this race after the Spinster,” Cox said. “She ran well last time at Keeneland against Letruska who went gate-to-wire. I think this is a good spot for her to cap off this year’s campaign.”
Bonny South opened her 4-year-old campaign with a win in the Doubledogdare Stakes (G3) at Keeneland in April and has four wins from 13 starts with earnings of $866,150.
Envoutante has returned to try and defend her title in the Falls City. The 4-year-old filly by Uncle Mo won the $150,000 Shawnee Stakes at Churchill Downs in late May. Following her 4 ¼-length victory, the Kenny McPeek trainee had back-to-back third-place finishes to Letruska in the $300,000 Fleur de Lis (G2) and Shedaresthedevil in the $400,000 Locust Grove (G3). In her most recent start, Envoutante finished fifth in the Spinster.
McPeek’s go-to rider Brian Hernandez Jr. will be in the saddle from post 4.
The Falls City field also includes Three Diamonds Farm’s Army Wife, who ran third in both the Alabama (G1) and Cotillion Stakes (G1) after previously prevailing in the Black-Eyed Susan (G2) and Iowa Oaks (G3). Trained by Mike Maker, Army Wife is cross entered in the Nov. 26 Comely Stakes (G3) at Aqueduct.