Lovely Lil got her first career stakes win in the $75,000 Union Avenue S. Aug. 22 at Saratoga to become the seventh stakes winner of the year for her sire Tiznow. The 4-year-old filly is now two-for-two in 2011; she made her debut this season with an allowance victory on July 27, also at Saratoga.
With plenty of early speed in the race, Lovely Lil sat comfortably off the pace for the first quarter mile. Ramon Dominguez gave her the cue to go nearing the quarter pole, and after going three wide into the stretch, she galloped by the leaders with ease to win with something in reserve. The final time for the six furlongs was 1:10.59 on a fast track.
“We were aware that there was some other speed, and I wasn’t going to discourage her one way or another,” Dominguez said. “She broke a little flat, and I had no other option other than to sit back. She was very relaxed and comfortable. I never really had to ask her, just tapped her on the shoulder a couple times.”
“We’ve always tried to keep her relaxed and then let Ramon do it,” said winning trainer Mike Hushion. “Why try to tell Ramon what to do? The speed broke very sharp. It’s always nice to have the fastest horse.”
The victory was Lovely Lil’s fourth in eight career starts. She raised her lifetime earnings to $154,890 for owner/breeder Barry K. Schwartz. Lovely Lil is a half-sister to two-time stakes winner Sweet Sweet and is out of How About Now, winner of Saratoga's Grade 2 Schuylerville S.