07/21/2006 11:00PM

'Wonder Lady' takes control

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Wonder Lady Anne L, Edgar Prado up, scores a three-quarter-length win in the Coaching Club American Oaks.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. was very surprised to see Wonder Lady Anne L part of the early pace in Saturday's $300,000 at Belmont Park. But as long as jockey Edgar Prado was happy being there, so was he.

"I was just riding along with Edgar, just seeing what was going to happen," Dutrow said. "She took control turning for home."

After dispatching of Sugar Shake and Teammate approaching the quarter pole, Wonder Lady Anne L opened up a five-length lead turning for home and held off a late run from 6-5 favorite Pine Island to win the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks by three-quarters of a length on closing day at Belmont Park. It was 1 3/4 lengths back to Miss Shop in third.

The victory enabled Prado to win the Belmont riding title, 65-64 over Eibar Coa. Dutrow, who had already wrapped up the trainers' title, finished with a 29-26 margin over Gary Contessa.

The win was the first of the year for Wonder Lady Anne L, and first since she took the Grade 2 Demoiselle last fall at Aqueduct.

Prado said he wanted to be five or six lengths off the early pace, but Wonder Lady Anne L "took me there every step of the way. She was doing everything so easily I let her do her own thing."

Wonder Lady Anne L dueled inside of Sugar Shake through six furlongs in 1:11.52, while Javier Castellano had Pine Island five wide and last down the backstretch. Castellano launched his bid entering the far turn, and Pine Island came with a run but fell just short.

"He kept her outside, which I thought was fine, but we got spun out so far on the turn and she kept coming," trainer Shug McGaughey said. "This is only her fourth start and to run like that . . . . At the eighth pole I was just hoping she was going to be second. We'll go up the road and hopefully two turns might help us."

McGaughey was referring to the Grade 1 Alabama run at Saratoga on Aug. 19.

Dutrow said the Alabama would be logical for Wonder Lady Anne L, but would not commit to running her in that spot.

Wonder Lady Anne L, a daughter of Real Quiet owned by a group that includes Sanford Robbins and the IEAH Stable, covered the 1 1/4 miles in 2:04.63 in the mud and returned $20.60 to win.

Evan Shipman: Spite the Devil rallies

Spite the Devil ended an eight-race losing streak by launching a sustained, wide rally to run down Organizer and win the $110,700 Evan Shipman Handicap by one length. Organizer, the 5-2 favorite, finished second by a neck over Rogue Agent.

It was Spite the Devil's first win since he won the $250,000 Empire Classic last October, off a 133-day layoff. He was 9-1 that day, and he was 9-1 on Saturday. Spite the Devil also won the Evan Shipman in 2004.

The victory was the eighth from 43 starts for the Spite the Devil, a 6-year-old son of Devil His Due owned and bred by Elisabeth Jerkens and trained by her husband, Allen. He has now earned $841,919.

Castellano rode Spite the Devil, who covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.79 in the mud and returned $21.40 to win.