09/12/2009 12:00AM

Swift Temper clear in Ruffian

Adam Coglianese
Swift Temper (left), racing on only 13 days' rest, moves to the lead outside favored Seventh Street entering the stretch of Saturday's Grade 1 Ruffian at Belmont Park.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Swift Temper liked running back on short rest a lot more than her trainer, Dale Romans, did.

Thirteen days after getting beat 13 1/2 lengths by Icon Project in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign at Saratoga, Swift Temper ran away from 1-4 favorite Seventh Street inside the final furlong to win Saturday's by 1 3/4 lengths at muddy Belmont Park. Seventh Street finished second by 8 3/4 lengths over Luna Vega. Skylighter, Be Fair, and Exotic Indy completed the order of finish.

It was the sixth win from 29 starts for Swift Temper and her first Grade 1 score. A 5-year-old daughter of Giant's Causeway, Swift Temper added the Ruffian to a resume that includes victories this year in the Grade 3 Sixty Sails Handicap and the Grade 2 Delaware Handicap.

"I think outside the top two or three [older fillies and mares], she's as good as anybody," said Romans, who trains Swift Temper for Mark Stanley.

Under Alan Garcia, Swift Temper broke sharply and raced a close-up fourth just inside of Exotic Indy as Be Fair set the early pace while being stalked by Seventh Street through splits of 23.03 seconds and 45.58 for the half-mile.

Entering the far turn, Swift Temper moved into third as Seventh Street confronted and passed Be Fair. Approaching the quarter pole, Swift Temper tackled Seventh Street, and though the two ran together to midstretch, Swift Temper edged clear. Swift Temper covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:40.59 in the mud and returned $11.40.

"I didn't like [running back quick], but she came out of the last race better than any race that I've had her for," Romans said. "Her first day on the racetrack she was fresh, training well, acted like she hadn't run."

The Ruffian was a Win and You're In race for the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic, but so was the Delaware Handicap. Romans said that Swift Temper would point to the Ladies' Classic on Nov. 6 with a possible start over Polytrack in the Grade 1 Spinster at Keeneland beforehand. The Ladies' Classic will be run at Santa Anita over a Pro-Ride track.

In her only previous start on a synthetic surface, Swift Temper was beaten 22 3/4 lengths. That race was three years ago and was the second start of her career.

"She's a different horse now than she was then," Romans said.

Seventh Street, who was coming off a gritty score in the Grade 1 Go for Wand Handicap at Saratoga on Aug. 2, really had no excuse under Rajiv Maragh.

"The other filly just wore her down in the end," Maragh said. "I had a pretty fair trip, best chance at winning. It didn't happen."