06/14/2004 12:00AM

Belmont: Prado lands on a winner

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ELMONT, N.Y. - Edgar Prado showed little rust from being out of the saddle for a week as he guided Mambo Slew through traffic in the stretch to run down favored Lucifer's Stone and win the Grade 3, $114,800 Sands Point Handicap by a neck at Belmont Park. It was 1 3/4 lengths back to Vous in third.

Prado, who picked up the mount on Mambo Slew when Mike Smith missed a flight from Southern California, rode three winners on the card, his first day back since winning the Belmont Stakes aboard Birdstone on June 5. Prado began serving a seven-day careless riding suspension on June 6.

Mambo Slew ($12) was shuffled back to last entering the far turn, then re-rallied before Prado took him off the rail around a tiring horse in upper stretch. In midstretch, Prado dove Mambo Slew back to the hedge and got through to nip Lucifer's Stone, who had taken the lead with a four-wide move under Jose Santos.

The connections of both Mambo Slew and Lucifer's Stone are considering invitations to the Grade 1, $750,000 American Oaks at Holly-wood Park on July 3.