Take Charge Lady, Bella Bellucci Aim for New York Stakes

Two of the top 3-year-old fillies in the country, Dogwood Stakes (gr. III) winner Take Charge Lady and Comely (gr. III) winner Bella Bellucci, will make their next starts in grade I stakes races at Belmont Park.

Michael Tabor's Bella Bellucci worked six furlongs at Aqueduct Sunday morning under the eye of trainer Neil Drysdale in preparation for the $250,000 Acorn at Belmont Park on June 7. The daughter of French Deputy completed the drill in 1:13 3/5, handily.

"She really enjoys training there," Drysdale said.

Take Charge Lady will bypass the one-mile Acorn in favor of the 1 1/8-mile Mother Goose on June 29. The Ken McPeek-trained daughter of Dehere rebounded Saturday from her first loss of the year in the Kentucky Oaks with a sharp 1 3/4-length victory in the Dogwood, completing the 1 1/16 miles in stakes record time.

"The Mother Goose would be ideal for her," said McPeek. "It's another mile and an eighth test for her and I'm not sure how she'll handle the Belmont surface, but she's good to go."

In her lone start at Belmont, Take Charge Lady faded to sixth after disputing the early lead in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I), a race in which Bella Bellucci finished third.

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