08/22/2011 3:34PM

Saratoga: Lovely Lil prevails in Union Avenue

Adam Coglianese/NYRA
Lovely Lil, with Ramon Dominguez riding, wins the Union Avenue.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Lovely Lil overcame a sluggish beginning to dominate the $75,000 Union Avenue Stakes for New York-bred fillies and mares Monday at Saratoga.

Lovely Lil, who was last after the break, advanced to striking position leaving the backstretch before readily overtaking Nicole’s Miss El near midstretch and cruising to a 1 3/4-length victory in the six-furlong Union Avenue. Jockey Ramon Dominguez had Lovely Lil geared down and in hand through the final 70 yards of Monday’s main event.

Lady Gracenote rallied mildly to finish third, another 2 3/4 lengths behind Nicole’s Miss El.

The victory was the second in as many starts this season for Lovely Lil, a 4-year-old daughter of Tiznow who finished fourth here last summer in the Grade 1 Test. Lovely Lil withstood a race-long duel on the lead to capture a second-level statebred optional claiming and allowance race in her 2011 debut on July 27.

Lovely Lil, who is trained by Michael Hushion for owner Barry K. Schwartz, completed the distance in 1:10.59 seconds and paid $3.80.