05/22/2004 12:00AM

Laura's Lucky Boy wins Will Rogers


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - A week after stablemate Rock Hard Ten finished second to Smarty Jones in the Preakness Stakes, Laura's Lucky Boy gave trainer Jason Orman his first stakes win in Saturday's $109,400 at Hollywood Park.

"It would have been better if it had happened a week ago, but we'll take this," said Orman, 35.

Winning his third consecutive race, Laura's Lucky Boy won the Grade 3 Will Rogers Stakes by four lengths over Toasted, the 2-1 favorite.

Ridden by Patrick Valenzuela for Ernie Moody's Mercedes Stable, Laura's Lucky Boy ($7.20) finished a mile on turf in 1:33.45, a stakes record.

Valenzuela kept Laura's Lucky Boy well-placed throughout. When Running Free and Boomzeeboom tore off to set an early pace of 22.79 and 45.49 seconds, Laura's Lucky Boy was fifth, racing four lengths off the pace. "I thought that was perfect," Orman said.

Laura's Lucky Boy rallied wide to reach contention on the final turn and quickly took the lead in early stretch.

Toasted rallied from seventh to finish second, a length in front of Street Theater in the field of eight 3-year-olds.

Laura's Lucky Boy has won 3 of 4 starts and $123,240. The winning streak includes a maiden win at Santa Anita on March 27 and an allowance race here on April 28, both on turf. "In the last two months, he's really come around," Orman said.

Laura's Lucky Boy may return in the $150,000 Cinema Breeders' Cup Handicap on June 26, Orman said.