01/07/2007 12:00AM

Buffalo Man rallies to win Spectacular Bid


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Buffalo Man kicked off Gulfstream Park's 3-year-old stakes season with a 3/4 length decision over 3-2 favorite Out of Gwedda in Sunday's $100,000 Spectacular Bid Stakes.

Buffalo Man, a son of El Prado owned in partnership by Rick Pitino's Ol'Memorial Stable and C. Ed Glasscock, rallied from perfect position outside the early leaders to take command entering the stretch of the six furlong Spectacular Bid.. He edged clear leaving the eighth pole then withstood late bids from Out of Gwedda, Green Vegas and James Wilfred.

Out of Gwedda, making his first start since winning Belmont's Tremont Stakes on July 4, was shuffled back to fourth position from along the inside after briefly contesting the pace, angled wide with his bid into the stretch and held gamely to finish second. Green Vegas and James Wilfred lagged off the early leaders before rallying belatedly from outside in the final furlong.

Straight Faced, the second choice in a field of seven 3-year-olds, faltered badly after challenging for the lead entering the stretch and finished a tiring fifth.

Buffalo Man, the second of three wins on the card for jockey Eddie Castro, covered six furlongs in 1:09.60 seconds and paid $9.40. The win was the fourth in six starts for Buffalo Man whose only two previous losses came in graded stakes.

"I wasn't really going to run in this race but he was doing so well we went ahead," said trainer Cam Gambolati. "The options are now the Holy Bull (Feb. 3) or the race at Ocala (Feb. 12) a week later. We'll talk it over but after the way he ran today, I guess it's time to try the big boys."