07/03/2009 11:00PM

Cat Moves outkicks her stablemate

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Susie Raisher/NYRA
Cat Moves remains unbeaten in three starts by winning her stakes debut in the Prioress.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Owner Ed Evans already liked his chances to win Saturday's with trainer Todd Pletcher and the filly Light Green. So when trainer Tony Dutrow told him that he would like to run the lightly-raced Cat Moves in the race, Evans needed some convincing.

Dutrow pleaded his case successfully and was rewarded with his second Grade 1 victory of the year when Cat Moves outfinished Light Green to win the $300,000 Prioress by three-quarters of a length at Belmont Park. Light Green, who dueled through wicked fractions with Heart Ashley, finished second by 2 1/4 lengths over longshot Reforestation. They were followed in the order of finish by Selva, Luster, Heart Ashley, On the Menu, Be Fair, and Gabby's Golden Gal.

It was the third win in as many starts for Cat Moves, a daughter of Tale of the Cat, who was making her stakes debut.

"Tony knew this was the race,'' Evans said. "He said he wanted to go to it. We talked about it for several weeks. But he knew what we didn't know.''

Dutrow said he didn't know his filly was going to win "but I was feeling good that Cat Moves was going to run great,'' he said.

Cat Moves, who lunged at the break under Ramon Dominguez, settled into fourth position while Heart Ashley, under Edgar Prado gunned for the lead with Light Green, under John Velazquez, pressing through fractions of 21.58 seconds and 44.01. Approaching the top of the stretch, Dominguez guided Cat Moves into the three-path and though Light Green opened up after putting Heart Ashley away, Cat Moves was able to reel her in late. Cat Moves covered the six furlongs in 1:08.55 and returned $4.20 as part of the Evans-owned entry.

"I was okay during the entire race,'' said Dutrow, who last month won the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps with Seattle Smooth. "I didn't know if we were going to win, but I could see that Ramon had a lot of horse and that we were going to have an exciting stretch.''

Pletcher had to deal with Light Green running a great race but settling for second-best.

"We were committed to letting our filly run her race, which we did. I was little surprised that someone was eager enough to go with her but she was able to put away some horses that ran fast and dig in, just couldn't hold off,'' Pletcher said.

Both horses could point for the Grade 1 Test at Saratoga on Aug. 8.