Belle of the North
Belle of the North and Horacio Karamanos after the Safely Kept. Photo Jerry Dzierwinski.

In a Safely Kept Stakes renewal filled with horses with stakes credentials, it turned out to be a filly who didn’t break her maiden until late September who proved best of all.

Belle of the North, trained by Jose Corrales for Stronach Stable, came rolling down the center of the track to run down Fraudulent Charge by a half-length and take the $100,000, seven-furlong test for sophomore fillies.

“You know, you get the right horse and the right rider, you’re always gonna have a chance,” Corrales said afterwards.

The slow-starting Belle of the North and jockey Horacio Karamanos figured to need help from the pace in today’s contest. They got it in the form of a duel for early supremacy between Malibu Beauty, the 3-1 second wagering choice, and 19-1 shipper Prodigy Doll. Those two clicked off an opening quarter-mile in 22.99 seconds and a half in 46.10 while just heads apart.

A length farther back sat the Lacey Gaudet-trained Fraudulent Charge, while Belle of the North lingered a half-dozen or more lengths behind while last of the eight.

Fraudulent Charge, with Johan Rosado up, circled the turn three wide and struck the front as heads turned for home. But by then Belle of the North was revving up his run in the center of the track.

Running time over a fast main track was 1:24.02 for seven furlongs. Belle of the North and Fraudulent Charge were well clear of show horse Street Lute, who went off the 2-1 post time favorite.

Belle of the North paid $20.60 to win as the sixth choice in the wagering. The exacta returned $59.30 for one dollar, with the triple returning $131.15.

It took Belle of the North four tries to break her maiden, which she accomplished September 24 in a seven-furlong maiden race at Laurel. In her follow-up to that, she ran second to the talented Moquist — and ahead of Fraudulent Charge.

Belle of the North is a daughter of Street Boss out of the Henrythenavigator mare Harley Rose. She’s a homebred for Stronach Stable, who also owned Something Awesome, the best horse Corrales has trained to date. Something Awesome won two graded stakes and earned nearly $1.2 million in his career.

“I’m so pleased because Mr. Frank [Stronach] gave me the opportunity, and I really am so happy for winning this stake race for him,” Corrales said. “More than anything else I’ve done, this one means a lot more to me than anything else, especially with [their having very few] horses right now.”

Corrales said he currently has only two Stronach-owned horses, but in racing, as in many other pursuits, quality matters more than quantity.

“I have very high respect for him, and he has helped me so much in my career,” Corrales said. “I love how he’s done so much for racing. I love my grandfather, and he is the kind of person my grandfather was.”

NOTES Six-year-old Cordmaker and regular pilot Victor Carrasco prevailed in the $100,000 Richard W. Small Stakes. Cordmaker has now won 11 races, with earnings exceeding $700,000. The Maryland-bred is trained by Rodney Jenkins for Hillwood Stable LLC… In the boys’ version of the Safely Kept, the $100,000 City of Laurel, Grade 3 winner Pickin’ Time stalked the pace and powered home to win by a length-and-change under Mychel Sanchez. It was the New Jersey-bred’s fifth career victory and pushed his earnings past $400,000. He’s trained by Kelly Breen for Roseland Farm Stable…