Cathryn Sophia's win in Saturday's Forward Gal Stakes (USA-II) was her most impressive to date even though it was "only" by 5-1/2 lengths. Not only did she made the step up to graded company look easy, but she did it in spite of lagging at the gate and throwing in an extra lead change in the stretch. You always like to see a young horse prove that she isn't wedded to a one-dimensional running style, and Cathryn Sophia showed no signs of discomfort with coming from off the pace or with being asked to run inside horses early.
Her next test is likely to be the 1-mile Davona Dale Stakes (USA-II) on February 27, and on paper it doesn't seem likely that the extra furlong will give her any trouble. While her sire Street Boss was a sprinter and never won at over seven furlongs, it should be remembered that he was never really given the opportunity to be anything else, even though his pedigree certainly suggested that a mile should have been within his scope. He has already proved that longer distances aren't beyond the reach of his progeny, as his son Danza won the 2014 Arkansas Derby (USA-I) and was a respectable third in the Kentucky Derby (USA-I).
On the dam's side, Cathryn Sophia is out of Sheave, whose sire Mineshaft won the 2003 Jockey Club Gold Cup (USA-I) over 10 furlongs while on his way to American Horse of the Year honors. The next dam, Belterra, won the Golden Rod Stakes (USA-II) over 8.5 furlongs and is by 1990 Kentucky Derby and Breeders' Cup Classic (USA-I) winner Unbridled. Granted, both Sheave and Belterra are half sisters to stakes winners who did their best running over sprint distances, but given Cathryn Sophia's smooth racing mechanics and her amenability to being placed as her jockey pleases, a mile should be easily within her scope. Longer distances are still a question mark, but at this point, Cathryn Sophia looks as good an Oaks prospect as any 3-year-old filly whose name isn't Songbird.