January 29, 2023

Bell’s the One edges Lake Avenue in Honorable Miss

Bell's The One wins the Honorable Miss Stakes (Photo by Coglianese Photos)

In a terrific battle between the two classiest participants in Wednesday’s $200,000 Honorable Miss H. (G2) at Saratoga, Bell’s the One prevailed by a neck over Lake Avenue in the final sixteenth of the six-furlong dash for fillies and mares.

The 9-10 favorite, Bell’s the One was last of eight after a quarter-mile of :22.80 was set by Ain’t No Elmers. However, the favorite was soon in high gear under Corey Lanerie. Advancing to sixth after a half-mile, Bell’s the One was tipped seven wide turning for home and turned in a sustained bid that propelled her to the narrow victory in a time of 1:09.83 over a fast track.

“I just let her run her race and when she got on her left lead on the turn, she said ‘it’s time to go’ and started making up ground so easy,” Lanerie said. “(Lake Avenue) actually put in more of a fight than I expected. I thought when I got to her, I was going to run away. But she wouldn’t go away for a while.”

Owned by Bob Lothenbach and trained by Neil Pessin, Bell’s the One paid $3.80. Second choice Lake Avenue finished 2 3/4 lengths clear of Ain’t No Elmers, who was followed by Truth Hurts, Miss Mosaic, Don’t Call Me Mary, Reagan’s Edge, and Honey I’m Good.

This was the seventh career stakes win and fourth at graded level for the five-year-old Bell’s the One, whose prior highlights include the 2020 editions of the Derby City Distaff (G1) and Winning Colors (G3), and the 2019 Raven Run (G2).

A dead-heat second in the Madison (G1) and fourth to Gamine in her Derby City Distaff title defense to start the year, she entered the Honorable Miss off a victory in the Roxelana S. at Churchill Downs. Her record now stands at 19-3-2, $1,126,825.

Pessin indicated he would target the Thoroughbred Club of America (G2) at Keeneland in October before a return trip to the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (G1) at Del Mar. Bell’s the One finished third in that Breeders’ Cup fixture last season.

Bred in Kentucky by Bret Jones, Bell’s the One is by Majesticperfection and out of Street Mate, a Street Cry half-sister to Grade 2 winner Tap Day.