05/05/2005 11:00PM

Edgewood: Blanc and Sweet Talker score


As much as he would like to shake the one-dimensional label, Brice Blanc is widely known as a highly proficient grass rider. Blanc insists he is equally capable on dirt, and yet the reason for his glowing turf reputation was on full display when Blanc gave Sweet Talker a sensational ride to win the $112,400 .

Sweet Talker, always near the pace when saving ground, burst through an opening near the edge turning for home, then opened a big advantage that carried her to a three-quarter-length triumph over fast-closing Rich in Spirit.

"She broke good and I was able to get her in a nice position," said Blanc. "My filly has a nice turn of foot, and turning for home we got in there before they closed the door on me."

Sweet Talker, owned by Eliah and Lisa Kahn and trained by Ken McPeek, returned $16.80 as fifth choice in a field of eight 3-year-old fillies.

Rich in Spirit, who trailed for most of the way, finished another two lengths before Insan Mala. Cape Hope, the 9-5 favorite, incurred her first loss from five grass starts when finishing fourth.

Sweet Talker, a Kentucky-bred by Stormin Fever, now has won 4 of nine 9 starts. She finished 1 1/16 miles in 1:41.94 over a firm course.

* Thursday marked the four-year anniversary of Monarchos's victory in the 2001 Kentucky Derby, and his winning connections - jockey Jorge Chavez, trainer John Ward Jr., and owner John Oxley - celebrated by earning another graded stakes victory at Churchill Downs. Their representative in Thursday's Grade 3, $114,200 La Troienne Stakes, Seek a Star ($7.40), proved a dominant winner in her stakes debut, scoring by 2 3/4 lengths.

* Just like last year, Nicole's Dream used her exceptional speed to gain the upper hand in the Mamzelle Stakes - only this time, there was no late challenge. Nicole's Dream ($7.80), who won the Mamzelle by a nose last year, led from the very first step Thursday under Eddie Martin Jr. and prevailed by a relatively comfortable 1 1/4 lengths in the $112,100 Mamzelle.