11/15/2003 1:00AM

Penn: Chicago shipper scores


Lovely Afternoon made her first five career starts in the Windy City of Chicago, so she must have felt right at home with the blustery conditions at Penn National.

Ridden by Larry Sterling, Lovely Afternoon ($2.80) rallied to score a 1 3/4-length victory in the $53,450 Blue Mountain Futurity for Pennsylvania-bred 2-year-old fillies.

Lovely Afternoon, who is trained by Tony Mitchell, showed potential as a maiden at Arlington Park when she finished third in the Top Flight and fourth in the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Lassie. Her only win came against maidens on the turf at Hawthorne last month.

Prudencia, a 12-1 shot, looked as though she might steal the Blue Mountain when she got loose on the lead through fractions of 22.53 and 46.49 seconds. But in the final quarter-mile, Lovely Afternoon made up a five-length deficit and overtook Prudencia. The winning time for six furlongs on a fast track was 1:12.64.