10/08/2004 11:00PM

With victory, Sightseek says farewell

Sightseek finishes her career with a dominant win in Saturday's Beldame.

ELMONT, N.Y. - There was an upset in the Beldame Stakes after all. No, Sightseek didn't lose. But what price could you have gotten in Las Vegas to see Bobby Frankel cry afterward?

Sightseek finished her career with, as Belmont Park track announcer Tom Durkin described it, a "routinely brilliant" victory, taking Saturday's $750,000 by 2 3/4 lengths before 8,106. It was the final start of Sightseek's career despite the pleadings of one fan who cried out, "One more race, Frankel," as Sightseek walked out of the winner's circle.

Frankel called Sightseek, owned by the Juddmonte Farms, the best mare he ever trained and said he was an emotional wreck all day.

"I worry about her," Frankel said as he wiped a tear from his eyes. "I wanted her to win and go out on top."

Frankel likens Lone Star Park, the sight of this year's Breeders' Cup, to Santa Anita, a track at which Sightseek was 0 for 5, including a fourth-place finish as the 3-5 favorite in last year's Breeders' Cup.

"I just thought this would be the best way to go out," he said. "I wanted her to go out a winner, so this was it. This was a big purse - $750,000 - she ran three weeks ago, and it would be three weeks again."

In a race without speed, Sightseek made an easy lead under Javier Castellano, maintaining a one-length lead through a half-mile in 48.40 seconds. Castellano had still not moved a muscle on Sightseek as she came to the stop of the stretch, while her pursuers were all out on their horses.

Society Selection, the only 3-year-old in the field, rallied for second, 1 1/4 lengths ahead of Storm Flag Flying.

Sightseek, a daughter of Distant View, covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:49.60 and returned $2.60 as the 3-10 favorite. There was a minus-show pool of $86,870.

Sightseek ends her career with 12 wins - seven in Grade 1 stakes - from 20 starts. She earned $2,445,216.

The only thing Sightseek may not retire with is an Eclipse Award. Though she went 4 for 6 this year, including three Grade 1 wins, Sightseek is no certainty to win the Eclipse Award, especially if Azeri wins the Breeders' Cup Distaff.

"I beat Azeri 11 lengths [in the Ogden Phipps], and Azeri beat her 1 1/2 lengths [in the Go For Wand]," Frankel said. "I know Azeri is the darling of everybody, but this is a great filly."