01/20/2003 12:00AM

Laurel: Cherokee's Boy romps

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Cherokee's Boy ($2.80) returned to sprinting to score a 3 1/4-length victory in the $60,000 Goss L. Stryker Stakes at Laurel Park, but later this season trainer Gary Capuano intends to give his 3-year-old colt some opportunities to go long.

"I'm planning on giving him a little rest after this, maybe 30 days in Florida," Capuano said of Cherokee's Boy, whose four wins in nine lifetime starts have all come at distances of seven furlongs or less. Under leading rider Ryan Fogelsonger, Cherokee's Boy covered seven furlongs in 1:23.59.