12/30/2004 1:00AM

Belong to Sea set to run big


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Little has gone right for Belong to Sea since she began her career with three straight wins in the winter and spring of 2003. Now that Belong to Sea is nearly done racing, things seemingly could not be going any better for the filly.

At least that's what trainer Lisa Lewis believes as she prepares to saddle Belong to Sea against six rivals in Saturday's $75,000 Interborough Handicap, the New Year's Day feature at Aqueduct.

, who will be bred in 2005, has not been out since finishing last in the Grade 2 Honorable Miss Handicap at Saratoga on Aug. 6. She displaced her palate in that race and underwent a myectomy to correct the problem. Lewis had Belong to Sea ready to run earlier than this, but the filly suffered some cuts and scrapes in a training accident, further delaying her return. Earlier this year, when finishing fifth as the 4-5 favorite in an allowance race at Pimlico, Belong to Sea suffered heat stroke.

"When you get her there right, she shows up," said Lewis, who saddled Belong to Sea to victory in the Grade 3 Miss Preakness Stakes in May 2003. "I'm really happy with the way she's been doing going into this race. When she's doing well, she lets you know."

Though Belong to Sea has only one win in her last eight starts, the Interborough looks like a good spot for Belong to Sea to return to her winning ways. Under Richard Migliore, she will most likely stalk the pace, which figures to be contested by High Peaks and Sweet Vision.

A hotly contested pace would also be beneficial to Bank Audit, Lavender Lass, and Mariakel.

has won two straight starts since returning to the races after being found to have ulcers in early fall. Trainer Greg Martin scratched her from a two-turn allowance race on Thursday for this. Martin claimed Bank Audit for $65,000 in July and discovered she had ulcers following a Sept. 17 race.

"I gave her seven weeks off and the filly's made a complete turnaround," said Martin, whose 24 wins in New York in 2004 all came at Aqueduct. "She's ready to fire her best shot, and if she's going to fire her best shot I'd rather she fire it in a stake."

just missed in allowance company last out. Mariakel lost by less than a length in the Garland of Roses on Dec. 11. Candybedandy comes off a career-best effort, winning a third-level allowance race on Dec. 17.