Updated on 09/15/2011 1:59PM

Disco Rico returns


Top East Coast sprinter Disco Rico makes his first start since winning the Grade 3 Maryland Breeders' Cup Handicap in Friday's $100,000 Paterson Handicap at The Meadowlands.

Say Florida Sandy, another tough sprinter from the East, is entered in the six-furlong Paterson, but is also among the entries in Friday's $75,000-added Gen. Douglas MacArthur Handicap at Belmont Park, where, if he starts, he would be a heavy favorite.

Five entered the Paterson. Disco Rico and Say Florida Sandy were each assigned highweight of 123 pounds, six to nine more pounds than their rivals.

Disco Rico has won four of six starts this year, including a commanding 2 1/2-length score in the Maryland Breeders' Cup on May 19, Preakness Day.

Disco Rico's trainer, Valora Testerman, said she gave her 4-year-old colt a freshening after the Maryland race and planned on bringing her sprinter back in the Dave's Friend at Pimlico on Aug. 11. Disco Rico's presence in the entry box scared away the competition, and the Dave's Friend was scrapped.

Testerman said she isn't worried about running in the Paterson, without the benefit of a prep.

"He runs well off a layoff, and I think going three-quarters is not a problem," said Testerman, who hopes Disco Rico can accumulate Breeders' Cup points in graded races this fall - after he runs in the ungraded Paterson - so he can compete in the Sprint on Oct. 27. "I always feel confident when I run him. He's training excellent and looks like a million dollars."

Harry Vega is back aboard front-runner Disco Rico, who drew post 3 and is the one to catch.

Say Florida Sandy, a 7-year-old New York-bred, has had a terrific season, with a record of 5-4-0 from 10 starts. Each of Say Florida Sandy's wins have come in stakes, including the Grade 3 Philadelphia Park Breeders' Cup in his last start on July 28.

Last weekend, trainer Juan Serey scratched Say Florida Sandy from the Grade 1 Forego at Saratoga when his horse drew post 1. Say Florida Sandy, a come-from-behind sprinter, drew the rail in both the restricted Gen. Douglas MacArthur, where he was assigned 127 pounds as the highweight, and in the Paterson.

Shadow Caster, Loaded Gun, and Night Caller complete the Paterson field.

Friday's 10-race card at The Meadowlands also features the $50,000 Salem County, a 1 1/16-mile grass race for 2-year-old fillies.

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