Lady Eli won Belmont Oaks in her last start in July 2015

Lady Eli won Belmont Oaks in her last start in July 2015

Coglianese Photos

Lady Eli Works on Inner Turf at Belmont

The 4-year-old filly's comeback had been delayed because of a tendon issue.

Sheep Pond Partners' Lady Eli, who continues her comeback from laminitis, worked a half-mile on the inner turf course at Belmont Park July 3, about a year since her last race at the New York track.

The 4-year-old Divine Park filly, who is undefeated in six starts, covered four furlongs in :52 1/5. It was her first work since March 21 at Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida.

"She went fine," trainer Chad Brown said. "It was a slow work—about :52 and change—but we just wanted to stretch her legs and see how she reacted. Next we we'll start to pick it up with her. We're being careful with her because we have a long way to go."

Brown said Lady Eli, who won the Belmont Oaks Invitational (gr. IT) July 4, 2015, in her last start, did well in her four dirt breezes in South Florida over the winter. He had penciled in the May 14 Beaugay Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Belmont for the filly's return, but some inflammation was found in a tendon.

NOVAK: Lady Eli Sparkles in Belmont Oaks

"We backed off and gave her some time walking. We took our time with her and then moved her to New York," Brown said. "Since she arrived at Belmont, she has been jogging and walking, and her tendons have been good. We gave her a little extra galloping to make sure she had enough foundation."

Lady Eli remained at Belmont last summer but Brown said he intends to bring her to Saratoga Race Course to continue preparations for her next starts.

"She will go to Saratoga," he said. "We kept her here last summer because she was battling laminitis. If we're going to run her at Saratoga we'd like to get her settled in up there. Hopefully if everything goes well by end of July, she'll have a handful of works under her belt."

Brown said no race has been selected for Lady Eli, who has earned $1,449,800 in her six starts.