02/12/2011 6:43PM

Coax Liberty finally gets elusive first stakes win in New York

Adam Coglianese/NYRA
Coax Liberty, under David Cohen, draws clear in the Dearly Precious.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - The trip to New York from Maryland finally paid dividends for Coax Liberty, who got outside in midstretch under David Cohen and stormed past even-money favorite Breathoffreshheir in the final 100 yards to win Saturday’s $65,000 Dearly Previous Stakes by two lengths at Aqueduct.

Breathoffreshheir, the Ruthless Stakes winner who set the early pace, held second by a head over Full Moon Blues. Overseas Market and Wild About Sonny completed the order of finish.

The win was the third from eight starts and first in a stakes for Coax Liberty, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Successful Appeal owned by Alina Muther’s Copper Penny Stables and trained by James Lawrence II. Coax Liberty, who is based at the Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland, had run in four previous stakes, including three in New York as a 2-year-old.

“She validated what I’ve said all along,’’ Lawrence said. “Sit and wait on this filly, make one move, and she’s awesome.’’

Though she broke sharp and was in the second flight of horses behind Breathoffreshheir, Coax Liberty got shuffled toward the back of the quintet behind fractions of 23.22 and 46.67 seconds.

Coax Liberty came into the stretch ready to roll and seemingly had a seam to split horses, but she didn’t appear comfortable doing that. Inside the three-sixteenths pole, Cohen got Coax Liberty to the outside and once in the clear she kicked hard, collaring Breathoffreshheir inside the sixteenth pole and drawing away.

Coax Liberty covered the six furlongs in 1:11.24 and returned $12.20 as the third choice in the five-horse field.

 “She broke very sharp, had a nice stalking position,’’ Cohen said. “The outside started stacking up on us pretty quickly. I chose to take her out of that and sit behind as opposed to going with them. That last quarter-mile, I set her down for a run, and she really exploded and gave me a really nice finish.’’

Lawrence, who won his first stakes in New York since Da Dean took the Grade 3 Lawrence Realization at Belmont Park in 1996, said he would like to bring Coax Liberty back to Aqueduct for the Grade 3, $100,000 Cicada Stakes here on March 19.

* There was one winning ticket sold on Saturday’s pick six, returning a healthy $102,310. There was a carryover of $22,227 entering the day. The winning sequence of 10-4-1-7-3-12 consisted of  Appledore ($5.70), Celebrity Sighting ($14.80), Surfactant ($3.30), Dakota Roadhouse ($10.80), Coax Liberty ($12.20) and Intrepid ($16.80).