The $150,000 Long Island Handicap (G3) for older fillies and mares at Aqueduct is the final graded turf stakes in New York. Emerald Beech was sent off as the 9-5 favorite in the field of 8, after finishing 4th in the Flower Bowl Invitational (G1) last out at Belmont Park. In to challenge her included last year's winner and 2-1 second choice Mekong Melody, off a 9th place finish in the E.P. Taylor Stakes (G1), and 9-2 third choice Hit It Rich, an allowance winner last out after finishing 8th in the Paris Opera Stakes at Saratoga.
Unbridled Essence set a moderate pace of 24.38, 49.39, 1:15.32, and 1:41.12 while stalked by Hit It Rich a length behind and to her outside. Entering the stretch for the final time, Hit It Rich moved up to take over the lead through 1 1/4 miles in 2:06.05. Mekong Melody, fourth early, put in a late rally coming between horses at the 3/16 pole, but Hit It Rich easily held her off by 1 1/2 lengths in a time of 2:30.39 over firm going. It was another 1 3/4 lengths back to Musical Rain third, while favorite Emerald Beech checked in 5th.