11/29/2003 1:00AM

Sunland: Homemaker strongest to finish

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SUNLAND PARK, N.M. - Trainer Bill Leach wasn't concerned about Homemaker facing 2-5 favorite Bugsy Marrone in the $55,400 Princess Stakes at Sunland Park.

After Homemaker won the Princess Stakes, a six-furlong race for 2-year-old fillies, Leach was asked if he was pleased when Bugsy Marrone was hooked in a speed duel that yielded a 44.44 half.

"Not to be bragging," Leach said, "but I thought we had the class of the race to begin with."

And so he did. At the quarter pole, Bugsy Marrone was four wide and had not been given a spare breath, while Homemaker was gearing up nearly five lengths back. By midstretch, Rama Lassie was the only survivor of the speed duel, and Homemaker ($15.20) drew off under hand-urging from Sal Gonzalez Jr. to win by 4 3/4 lengths in 1:09.48. Bugsy Marrone finished seventh, triggering a $1 trifecta that paid $14,613. Satine (95-1) finished second, a neck in front of Rama Lassie (25-1).