01/21/2008 1:00AM

Liberty Bull edges Isabull in Smarty Jones


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – Liberty Bull withstood a stretch bid from Isabull and a stewards' inquiry for making contact in the stretch with that rival to win the inaugural Smarty Jones Stakes before 11,871 at Oaklawn Park on Monday. Liberty Bull won the $50,000 stakes for 3-year-olds by neck over Isabull. It was another 3 3/4 lengths back in third to Young Ruler.

Liberty Bull ($6) was making his two-turn debut in the one-mile Smarty Jones, and settled in behind a trio of pacesetters - Poni Colada, Cape of Storms, and Saratoga Seven. Those three led through fractions of 23.02 seconds for the first quarter and 46.77 for the half-mile. Liberty Bull launched a four-wide bid into the final turn, took the lead in the stretch, and ran the distance over a fast track in 1:38.12.

Eddie Razo rode the winner for trainer Tom Amoss.

Liberty Bull earned $30,000 for the win, his second in four career starts. A a son of Holy Bull, he races for Kenneth Maier.