04/18/2002 11:00PM

Sweet Promises wins stakes


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Sweet Promises became the youngest stakes winner in Florida, posting a neck victory over Supah Blitz and four other 2-year-olds in Friday's $80,600 Valid Appeal Stakes at Gulfstream Park.

Sweet Promises ducked in briefly at the start to bump with I'm Rich, then quickly sprinted clear once straightened by jockey Cornelio Velasquez. He opened a 2 1/2-length advantage near midstretch, then was fully extended to withstand Supah Blitz. Supah Blitz also bumped with I'm Rich at the break and found his best stride in the final furlong, gradually cutting into the winner's advantage before running out of real estate.

Lucky Magus, who raced coupled in the wagering with Sweet Promises, rallied to finish third, another head behind Supah Blitz.

Sweet Promises covered three furlongs in 33.02 seconds and paid $3.40.

"He's done everything right from the time we got him in," said Larry Pilotti who trains Sweet Promises for his owner-breeder, Frank Bertolino. "We'll see how he comes out of the race, but the WHAS Stakes at Churchill Downs on Derby Day could be a possibility."