06/05/2005 11:00PM

Key races point out 'Natalie'


ELMONT, N.Y. - If all the stakes races this week at Belmont Park are as competitive as Wednesday's $60,000 England's Legend, handicappers will be working overtime.

The England's Legend, scheduled for nine furlongs over Belmont's inner turf, drew a full field of 12, though not all will run. Trainer Michael Dickinson said Dynamia would scratch to run in Sunday's Politely Stakes at Monmouth. Trainer Jonathan Sheppard may run only one of the two he entered.

, who finished sixth March 12, have come back to win.

Natalie Beach won a third-level allowance race here on May 12 by a neck, rallying up the rail under John Velazquez while Sharp Needle charged down the center of the course. Sharp Needle came back to win her next start.

Toner said that in the Gulfstream race, jockey Jose Santos had to wait for room and then move to the outside, which cost Natalie Beach some ground. In the Belmont race, Velazquez - subbing for an ill Santos - waited for room on the hedge and found it in the stretch. Santos is back aboard on Wednesday.

Natalie Beach has tried nine furlongs only once, finishing third behind Madeira Mist in a minor stakes at Delaware Park.

"This is the perfect opportunity to stretch out,'' Toner said. "She's going into it the right way. It's a big field, but with a little bit of luck she will be tough to beat.''

Trainer Christophe Clement sends out , who finished third behind Wend in the $150,000 Hollywood Breeders' Cup Handicap on April 30 at Calder. Clement said he is counting on firm turf to help Hymn of Love get the distance.

Of his two entrants, Sheppard said Broad Hopes is definite to run while is possible. Both are coming off strong allowance wins in Kentucky. Sheppard said Broad Hopes was compromised by poor starts in her first two races this year before taking advantage of a hot pace to win a classified allowance at Keeneland.

"We feel she's on the threshold of being a stakes horse,'' Sheppard said.