01/29/2006 12:00AM

Behaving Badly best in Santa Monica


ARCADIA, Calif. - The raw speed of Behaving Badly was too much for her seven rivals to overcome in Sunday's $250,000 at Santa Anita.

Allowed to set a quick pace, Behaving Badly was brilliant in the Grade 1 Santa Monica, pulling away to win the seven-furlong race by 4 1-2 lengths over Miss Terrible. Ridden by Victor Espinoza, Behaving Badly ($4.60) was timed in 1:21.93.

"I told Victor, 'Let her drag you to the lead,'" trainer Bob Baffert said. "She's one-dimensional."

Breaking from post 7, Behaving Badly set fractions of 22.14 and 44.12 seconds, leading by as much as 2 1-2 lengths on the backstretch. None of the other fillies and mares mounted a challenge in the stretch, allowing Behaving Badly to pull farther clear.

"When I saw 22, I thought that wasn't bad," Baffert said of the opening quarter-mile fraction. "I didn't want to see 21. She's so fast."

Miss Terrible, the winner of two graded stakes last year, closed from fifth to finish second, 1 1-2 lengths in front of Leave Me Alone, who was as close as second on the final turn.

Behaving Badly races for Hal and Patti Earnhardt. A 5-year-old, Behaving Badly has won 5 of 7 starts and $347,200. She won her first stakes in the Grade 3 Rancho Bernardo Handicap at Del Mar last summer.

*Cambiocorsa ($9) won her stakes debut in the $96,800 Wishing Well Handicap, leading throughout over about 6 1-2 furlongs on the hillside turf course.

Ridden by Aaron Gryder, Cambiocorsa was timed in 1:12.42 and finished 1 1-2 lengths in front of 55-1 Sweet Ambition. Elusiva Diva, the 1-2 favorite, finished third in the field of eight fillies and mares.