La Bella Vita N (Changeover) stayed red hot on a chilly afternoon at Saratoga Casino Hotel on Monday. The Alicia Gray-trained distaffer overcame her outside post to win the $16,000 Fillies and Mares Open. Shawn Gray sat behind the seven year old as she won her third consecutive start on Monday.
Bouncing back and forth between Saratoga and Plainridge this summer, La Bella Vita N powered out early from post seven in the seven-horse feature and although she had to work hard to post a 27 second flat first quarter, the New Zealand invader got a big time breather in quarter two before reaching the half in 57 seconds. Probert (Brett Beckwith) wound up first-over on the race’s favorite on Monday and although she tested her in the stretch, the chase proved futile.
La Bella Vita N stopped the timer in 1:53.4 for her second victory in the local Open and her tenth win of the 2022 season. The even-money favorite led an exacta with Probert second that paid $19 while the triple, which was rounded out by Alittlesidehustl N (Billy Dobson), returned $49.60. She is owned by Bowie Racing of Illinois and Michael Goldberg Racing of Massachusetts.
Live racing resumes on Saturday evening at Saratoga with first post time set for 5pm.
Photo: Melissa Simser