09/28/2010 2:45PM

Beautician looks strong in Belle Cherie

Barbara D. Livingston
Beautician, with Scotty Leleux up, exercises Saturday at Saratoga in preparation for Thursday’s Belle Cherie.

ELMONT, N.Y. – Beautician, who finished strongly and ended a long winless drought against allowance sprinters at Saratoga last month, is the morning-line favorite to score right back in Thursday’s $70,000 Belle Cherie overnight stakes.

Beautician, runner-up in last year’s Spinaway and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, drew the outside post in a field of 11 3-year-old fillies. The daughter of Dehere will be handful if she runs back to her Aug. 29 allowance race, when she rallied from next-to-last to win going away and earned her best Beyer Speed Figure in almost a year, a 90.

“She’s been a good filly from the beginning and has always done everything right, except win,” trainer Ken McPeek said. “This is a good next step, and she’ll be tough if she runs back to her last race. We’d like to get her a stakes win as opposed to being multiple Grade 1-placed. If she were to win here, we’d entertain thoughts of running her back in the Raven Run” at Keeneland on Oct. 23.

Though the one-mile Belle Cherie is not graded, the field is deeper than many Grade 3 stakes. Among the 10 set to oppose Beautician, who will run rain or shine, are Bahama Bound, who came within a neck of winning four straight mile races during the first half of the year; Ailalea, who has won all three of her one-mile dirt starts including the Tempted at Aqueduct last fall and the Dogwood at Churchill Downs in May; and Touching Beauty, who took the Comely at the Big A in April and finished seventh in her first start since then in the Victory Ride on Travers Day.

Quiet Giant is light on experience, but she is a half-sister to 2005 Horse of the Year Saint Liam and won her first two dirt starts by nearly 14 lengths. She is trained by Todd Pletcher.

With a forecast that calls for an 80 percent chance of rain, Kid Kate also is in with a big chance. But although Kid Kate has won all three of her starts on wet tracks, she recorded her fastest Beyer Speed Figure (90) on a fast Belmont track in mid-June. Kid Kate worked a bullet half-mile on the main track Saturday for trainer Chad Brown.

Completing the lineup areHyperlink, Worship the Moon, Fleeting Humor, Shirley She Can, and Freud’s Notebook.