09/11/2005 12:00AM

Stellar Jayne wires Ruffian Handicap

Stellar Jayne wins Sunday's Grade 1 Ruffian Handicap by 1 1/2-lengths.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Stellar Jayne continued her love affair with Belmont Park while Society Selection continued her tough-luck 4-year-old season in Sunday's Grade 1 .

Stellar Jayne took advantage of a poor start for the other speed horse, Capeside Lady, as she galloped to a gate-to-wire, 1 1/2-length victory in the $300,000 Ruffian before 6,637 at Belmont. Society Selection, who raced between horses and was shuffled back to last at the top of the stretch, rallied to get second by four lengths over Halory Leigh.

It was the fourth victory on the card for jockey Jerry Bailey, who also won the Grade 2 Belmont Breeders' Cup aboard Shakespeare. On Saturday, Bailey won the Grade 1 Woodward with Saint Liam.

Sunday's victory was the fourth from five career starts at Belmont for Stellar Jayne, a daughter of Wild Rush. Last year, when owned by Spendthrift Farm and trained by D. Wayne Lukas, Stellar Jayne won two Grade 1 races at Belmont and finished third in the Breeders' Cup Distaff at Lone Star Park.

Following the Distaff, Spendthrift Farm put her through the sales ring at the Keeneland November breeding stock sale where Godolphin Racing Inc. purchased her for $3.6 million.

Stellar Jayne, making just her second start this year, assumed command quickly under Bailey and faced no early pressure when Capeside Lady broke poorly and ducked in at the point where the chute and main track meet. Stellar Jayne set fractions of 23.87 seconds, 47.16, 1:10.96 and covered the 1 1-16 miles in 1:41.87. She returned $4.50 as the favorite.

``She broke sharp and went into a nice, relaxed mode,'' Bailey said. ``[Capeside Lady] never showed up, so I just took what came easy. She had plenty left in the tank.''

Trainer Saeed bin Suroor, in town before heading to the yearling sales in Kentucky, said he would decide later whether to run Stellar Jayne back in the $750,000 Beldame here on Oct. 1 or simply train her up to the Breeders' Cup Distaff here on Oct. 29.

Meanwhile, Society Selection ran well in defeat, her fourth loss in five starts this year. Javier Castellano wanted to take Society Selection outside for the stretch drive, but found no place to go and opted to rally up the rail.

``I didn't want to change my horse's style, it was the first time I rode my filly and [trainer Allen Jerkens] said she likes to come from behind and outside,'' Castellano said. ``Everybody went outside into the last turn, and she came through and she ran good. Second-best today.''