02/12/2007 12:00AM

Buffalo Man wins OBS Championship


OCALA, Fla. - Buffalo Man boosted his stock on Monday when he won the male division of the $100,000 OBS Championship Stakes at the Ocala Training Center. The Championship, which was restricted to 3-year-olds who have gone through the sales ring of an OBS auction, was the featured race on a non-parimutuel card of six stakes.

Jockey Edgar Prado guided Buffalo Man, a son of El Prado, to a 1o1/2-length victory over No Reply, with Green Vegas third in the 1 1/16-mile race. The final time of 1:44.40 was a fifth of a second off the track record.

The Championship was the third straight stakes victory for Buffalo Man, who had been scratched out of this past Saturday's Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds after he drew post 14. Owned by Ol Memorial Stable and Clinton Glasscock and trained by Cam Gambolati, Buffalo Man had won the Spectacular Bid Stakes at Gulfstream Park in his prior start.

Edgar Prado put Buffalo Man in a stalking position behind Steelix through fractions of 23.80 seconds, 48.80, and 1:12.60. Prado urged Buffalo Man from this point and had little trouble putting the front-runner away.

Buffalo Man was joined by Green Vegas at the eighth pole and the two raced together for a sixteenth of a mile, brushing several times before Buffalo Man drew off. No Reply was along in time to nip Green Vegas by a half-length for second.

"There are many options open to us," Gambolati said after the race. "The Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream is one. The Tampa Bay Derby is another, as is the Arkansas Derby."

Because the owners of Buffalo Man have strong connections to Louisville, Gambolati is hoping his charge has the stuff to make it to the Kentucky Derby, but in a postrace interview he also mentioned that Buffalo Man is a Canadian-bred and is eligible for the Queen's Plate.

o Dinner Break, with Eibar Coa riding, won the filly division of the $100,000 OBS Championship Stakes by two lengths in 1:46.20. Maria's Kitty came in second, three lengths ahead of Synergy.

o The $50,000 OBS Sprint Stakes, also restricted to horses who went through the ring of an OBS auction, had two divisions. Forevertogether won the filly division by 2 1/2 lengths over Taletobetold. Lia Luck finished third in the six-furlong race, run in 1:10.40.

The male division of the OBS Sprint was won by Jodi's Star in a nose photo over Frosty Secret. B.B Mancini came in third, 4 1/4 lengths farther back. The race was timed in 1:10.20.

o The remaining stakes on the card were the $45,000 Florida Thoroughbred Charities Stakes at five furlongs, and the 1 1/16-mile, $45,000 Florida Distaff Stakes. The Florida Thoroughbred Charities Stakes went to Far West, who won by 1 1/2 lengths in 57.40. Multiple stakes winner Top Notch Lady was a galloping seven-length winner of the Florida Distaff Stakes, completing the distance in 1:46.20.