06/03/2007 11:00PM

Nashoba's Key stays unbeaten in Milady

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The coronation of Balance or Hystericalady as the leader of the California older filly and mare division will have to wait. The list of contenders for that role grew on Sunday when Nashoba's Key beat those two and three others in the $186,100 Milady Breeders Cup Handicap at Hollywood Park.

Unbeaten in four starts, Nashoba's Key ($12.80) showed a remarkable rally in the final furlong, passing Balance and Hystericalady, to win the Grade 2 Milady by three-quarters of a length. Ridden by apprentice jockey Joe Talamo, Nashoba's Key ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.16.

"The way she finished was just extraordinary," Talamo said. "She just accelerated. In a positive, confident way, I thought she'd win going into the race."

Hystericalady, the 4-5 favorite, led by 2 1/2 lengths with a furlong remaining, but could only manage to finish second.

"I thought the race was all over," said David Flores, who rode Hystericalady. "That other filly came out of nowhere. My filly, she was running, she didn't stop."

Balance, the winner of the Grade 1 Santa Margarita Handicap at Santa Anita in March, was third throughout and was beaten 5 1/4 lengths.

Nashoba's Key, 4, scored the most prestigious win of her career in the Milady. The race was her first start on a synthetic track after winning her first three races on turf.

Owned by Warren Williamson and trained by Carla Gaines, Nashoba's Key won her stakes debut in the Fran's Valentine Stakes against statebreds in April. She has earned $263,460.