09/12/2008 11:00PM

Music Note will surely be heard from


ELMONT, N.Y. - Music Note returns to her favorite track Saturday for the Grade 1, $250,000 Gazelle Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Belmont Park.

The Gazelle is the top attraction on a card that includes three other graded stakes: the Grade 3, $100,000 Noble Damsel for fillies and mares on the turf and a pair of Grade 2, $250,000 stakes for 2-year-olds, the Futurity and the Matron for fillies.

Music Note has won her last three races at Belmont, a stretch that started with an allowance race and continued with a pair of Grade 1 wins in the Mother Goose and the Coaching Club American Oaks.

She worked a sharp five furlongs in 59.84 seconds at Belmont on Monday

"She's coming up to it really well," said Rick Mettee who oversees Godolphin Racing's New York division. "She breezed really well over this track the other day. It was kind of the way she breezed before she won the CCA Oaks. She seems to get around this track a little bit better than the main track at Saratoga or the Polytrack at Greentree up there."

Music Note's winning streak came to end last time out in the Grade 1 Alabama at Saratoga, where she lost by only a head, done in by a combination of a dead game Proud Spell and a possible "bounce" off a career-best win in the Coaching Club American Oaks.

"Off a career best like that, the Alabama was a good race," Mettee said. "You're not going to get that CCA Oaks effort every time. It was still a very good race, and it took the Kentucky Oaks winner to battle back and beat us. There were no excuses. Obviously, the pace scenario didn't help, but still, we got to her throat latch at the eighth pole and couldn't get by her."

Regular jockey Javier Castellano will ride.

Country Star is the other Grade 1 winner in the field, having won the Alcibiades at Keeneland and the Hollywood Starlet at Hollywood Park last year, both on synthetic surfaces.

Most recently, Country Star won an allowance race on the turf at Saratoga for trainer Bobby Frankel, her first start following a freshening after running sixth in the Kentucky Oaks.

She rejoined Frankel in July at Belmont and he equipped her with a new bit to give the rider more control.

"She's doing much better," Frankel said. "She's dead fit. She's so good right now."

As for facing Music Note, Frankel said, "I'm not conceding she's better than me yet."

- additional reporting

by David Grening