05/30/2005 12:00AM

Monmouth: Toll Taker tops two rivals

Ryan McAlinden/EQUI-PHOTO
Toll Taker (4) with Aaron Gryder riding, wins the $150,000 Boiling Springs Handicap at Monmouth Park over (6) Pleasant Lyrics and John Velazquez.

Toll Taker, the odds-on choice in a field of just three fillies, defeated Pleasant Lyrics in the Grade 3, $150,000 at Monmouth Park. Ruby Martini, the third starter, finished nearly 18 lengths behind the top two.

Toll Taker started as the 7-10 favorite when the Boiling Springs was taken off the turf and run on the main track. With Aaron Gryder aboard, Toll Taker took the lead from the start and held it until midstretch of the 1 1/16-mile race. Pleasant Lyrics and John Velazquez went past Toll Taker, but Toll Taker came back to win by neck.

Tim Hills trains Toll Taker, a 3-year-old daughter of Bernstein who won for the third time in five starts at Monmouth. She paid $3.40 to win and topped a $5.40 exacta after racing 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.36.

* In the the day's supporting feature, Tap Day drew off to win the $65,000 Frisk Me Now Stakes by 9 1/4 lengths under jockey Jose Velez Jr.