10/03/2007 11:00PM

Indian Blessing stretches to mile in Frizette

EmailELMONT, N.Y. - Indian Blessing has already flashed her brilliant speed. Now she must show whether she has some stamina.

Coming off a brilliant debut win going 5 1/2 furlongs at Saratoga, Indian Blessing will attempt to stretch out to one mile in Saturday's Grade 1, $400,000 Frizette Stakes at Belmont Park. With a slew of late entries, the Frizette field blossomed to nine.

Bob Baffert, trainer of Indian Blessing, is also the trainer of Cry and Catch Me, who last week successfully stretched out from a 5 1/2-furlong maiden win to take the Grade 1 Oak Leaf at 1 1/16 miles.

"She's got a great mind," Baffert said of Indian Blessing. "Her and Cry and Catch Me are two exceptional fillies."

Baffert said Indian Blessing inherited her demeanor from her parents, Indian Charlie and Shameful. Baffert trained both. Indian Charlie won races at 5 1/2 furlongs, seven furlongs, a mile, and 1 1/8 miles before finishing third in the 1998 Kentucky Derby. Shameful never won beyond six furlongs.

Baffert said he had Indian Blessing ready to run in early August at Del Mar, but did not run her until Aug.o30 at Saratoga when she won a 5 1/2-furlong maiden race by 5 1/4 lengths, covering the distance in 1:03.26. One day earlier, Indian Blessing's stablemate J Be K had run 5 1/2 furlongs in a track record 1:03.13.

Since her win, Indian Blessing has worked four times at Belmont, including a one-mile move in 1:41 from the gate in company with J Be K, who has since been sidelined by a temperature. Jockey Garrett Gomez has been working Indian Blessing and will take over from Rafael Bejarano in the Frizette.

"I wanted to get a little foundation in her," Baffert said of the longer works. "I thought maybe Garrett could switch her off. She's not going to leave there and go in 21-and-1. She's pretty handy, the way Indian Charlie was."

If Gary Contessa has his way, Indian Blessing won't make the lead in the Frizette. Contessa is the new trainer of Dill or No Dill, a fast filly whom Winning Move Stable purchased after she beat colts in the Clevor Trevor Stakes at Remington Park last out.

"There'll be no taking this filly back," Contessa said. "If they want to go an opening quarter in 22, we'll accommodate them."

A Little Gem enters the Frizette off a victory in the Sorority Stakes at Monmouth Park in which she came from off the pace. Trainer Steve Margolis shipped her from Monmouth to Belmont eight days before the race to get a work over the track and a few schooling sessions in the paddock.

"She's trained well," Margolis said. "She's a filly that feels good, had got a lot of energy. We've done some schooling with her. Sometimes she can get a little feisty in the paddock. We just tried to keep her happy."

Armonk, who finished second to Proud Spell in the Grade 2 Matron as a maiden, is back for another try in the Frizette. Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin is adding blinkers to her equipment. McLaughlin also sends out Sabooh, who finished fifth in the Matron.

Completing the field are Elocution, winner of the Mountaineer Juvenile Fillies, Color Me Up, Backseat Rhythm, and Sunday Holiday.