09/29/2001 12:00AM

Queenie Belle wins Lady's Secret


ARCADIA, Calif. - Queenie Belle, who spent seven months sidelined with an injury earlier this year, won her first graded stakes in more than a year in Saturday's $209,400, Grade 2 Lady's Secret Breeders' Cup Handicap.

Queenie Belle ($7.20) ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.64, scoring a 1 1/4-length win over 19-1 Letter of Intent.

The victory left owner Gary Seidler and trainer Ben Cecil planning for a start in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff at Belmont Park on Oct. 27 instead of the California Cup Matron at Santa Anita on Nov. 3, a race Queenie Belle won in 2000.

Ridden by Brice Blanc, Queenie Belle stalked pacesetter Favorite Funtime to the second turn, through fractions of 23.12 and 46.19 seconds. Blanc brought Queenie Belle three wide to reach contention entering the stretch and was not threatened in the final furlong.

"At the three-eighths pole, she picked it up and blew by the other horses," Blanc said. "I knew my filly likes this track."

Nany's Sweep finished third in the field of six fillies and mares. Tamara Princess, the 6-5 favorite, finished last after fading from contention in the final furlong. The Lady's Secret was Tamara Princess's first loss, in her fourth start.

Queenie Belle missed training earlier this year after a problem was detected with a cannon bone. The Lady's Secret Handicap was her first graded stakes win since the Grade 2 Princess Stakes at Hollywood Park in June 2000.