10/15/2011 5:28PM

Belmont Park: Denomination shows she still has it with Athenia score

Adam Coglianese/NYRA
Denomination gallops home in the Athenia under Joe Bravo.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Denomination may have made the last start of her career on Saturday, and if it was, she went out in style, rallying under Joe Bravo for a 2 3/4-length victory in the Grade 3, $100,000 Athenia Stakes at Belmont Park.

Unbridled Humor, the even-money favorite, finished second by two lengths over Countess Lemonade. Thai Haku, Nefertiti, Thundering Emilia, and Stormy Dixie completed the order of finish. Aquitaine was scratched.

Denomination, a 5-year-old daughter of Smart Strike, won for the seventh time in 22 starts. Denomination added the Athenia to earlier Grade 3 stakes wins in the Hillsborough at Tampa Bay Downs and the Violet at Monmouth in May.

Denomination, owned by Ghislaine Head, will be offered in the Fasig-Tipton mixed sale on Nov. 6 in Kentucky.

“This was the best advertising you could do for the filly obviously,” said trainer Christophe Clement, who won this race for the third time. “She’s a nice filly. She won three Grade 3’s this year. She’s a nice horse.”

Denomination hadn’t been out since winning the Violet at Monmouth in May. She came out of the race sore, Clement said earlier in the week.

She looked very good on Saturday, sitting back in sixth position before swinging four wide under Bravo and overpowering Unbridled Humor outside the sixteenth pole.

Denomination covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.17 over the Widener turf course and returned $11.

Bravo had ridden the horse in the Violet and was confident he could wait until the stretch to ask his filly for her best turn of foot.

“Knowledge is always key and the more you know about anything it helps,” Bravo said. “When you’re on the best horse you can do whatever you want and I felt I was on the best today.”

I’m Steppin’ It Up wins Chief Tamanaco

I’m Steppin’ It Up, under Jeremy Rose held off a late-charge from a slow-starting Bold Warrior to win the $60,000 Chief Tamanaco Stakes by a half-length.

Bold Warrior, who appeared to be leaning back when the gates opened, had to go wide and was late in switching leads, but got up for second by a neck over San Pablo.

I’m Steppin’ It Up, a 3-year-old son of Congrats who won the off-the-turf Kent Stakes at Delaware Park on Sept. 24, covered a mile in 1:35.72 over a fast main track. He returned $8 to win.