10/02/2010 4:48PM

Life At Ten pulls away for Beldame score

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Barbara D. Livingston
Life At Ten, with John Velazquez up, wins the Beldame by two lengths.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Unhurried after breaking a step slowly from her inside post, Life At Ten recovered to gain a stalking position down the backstretch and pulled away from favored Unrivaled Belle through the stretch to win the Grade 1, $350,000 Beldame under John Velazquez on Saturday at Belmont Park.

Life At Ten, who won six straight races for Todd Pletcher before dueling with Rachel Alexandra and fading to third behind Persistently in the Personal Ensign at Saratoga, gained a measure of revenge over Persistently, who was never in the hunt and finished a distant third.

Life At Ten was taken off the inside down the backstretch as Queen Martha went to the front through fractions of 23.68 and 47.80 down the backstretch. She moved three wide outside Unrivaled Belle as they challenged the leader in tandem through six furlongs in 1:12.39, and drew away to win by two lengths after 1 1/8 miles in 1:49.29 seconds on a fast track.

"Our filly was training better leading into this race, and she really likes Belmont," said Pletcher. "She ran okay at Saratoga a couple of times, but I don't think that is her favorite surface. We made a tactical decision in the last race, and it kind of backfired. So this time we had a better plan letting her fall into a rhythm, and hoped that the other two fillies would show some initiative, and it worked out well."

Sent off as the second choice, Life At Ten ($4.90) banked $210,000 for owner Candy DeBartolo in notching her eighth win in 16 career starts. She surpassed the $1 million mark in earnings with a total of $1,149,267.

A 5-year-old mare by Malibu Moon, Life At Ten is not Breeders' Cup nominated, and would have to be supplemented to the Ladies Classic on Nov. 5 at Churchill Downs at a cost of $160,000.

"Hopefully we will be heading to Louisville if everything goes well," said Pletcher.

Unrivaled Belle finished second as the 5-4 choice - the third straight time she has been second as the favorite since upsetting Rachel Alexandra in the La Troienne.

Persistently overtook Queen Martha to finish a nonthreatening third, 6 3/4 lengths behind Unrivaled Belle. Miss Match was last in the field of five older fillies and mares.