05/05/2007 12:00AM

Take the Ribbon takes Distaff by nose

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LOUISVILLE – Trainer Wally Dollase got his Churchill Downs meet off to a rousing start, winning two races on Saturday's card, including the Grade 3, $166,350 Churchill Downs Distaff Turf Mile with Take the Ribbon who got her nose down on the wire in the last jump to beat Quite a Bride. It was 2 1/2 lengths back to Rich Fantasy in third.

Magnificent Song, the 6-5 favorite, finished fourth followed by Culpeper Moon.

"I can't do anything wrong," said Dollase, who is now 3 for 3 at the meet. "Whenever you win by one inch that's what I call a luck-out win."

Earlier on the card, Dollase won a maiden dirt race with Inside Passage, a 3-year-old half-sister to Take the Ribbon.

In the Distaff, Take the Ribbon, under Rafael Bejarano, raced in third position for most of the trip as Rich Fantasy cut out fractions of 24.29 seconds, 48.94, and 1:13.59. Bejarano swung Take the Ribbon three wide turning for home. Quite the Bride, under Cornelio Velasquez, made the lead in midstretch, but Take the Ribbon caught her on the line.

"When I came to the turn she switched leads again and she kept running and the horse finished strong," Bejarano said. "[Quite a Bride] finished strong too; I didn't think I had her, but in the last jump she put her head down."

Take the Ribbon covered the mile over good turf in 1:36.89 and returned $9.

The race lost its top two choices as 2-1 morning-line favorite Price Tag and 5-2 second choice Lady of Venice scratched. Trainer Bobby Frankel said he did not want to run Price Tag on soft turf. Trainer Patrick Biancone said Lady of Venice suffered a cut on her knee and was not 100 percent. He, too, did not want to run on soft turf.