01/24/2004 1:00AM

Oaks: Silent Sighs wins - barely - as favorite

Silent Sighs (outside), with David Flores aboard, runs ahead of Wacky for Love to win the $250,000 Sunshine Millions Oaks at Gulfstream Park on Saturday.

It's certainly not the way a 1-5 shot is supposed to win, but Silent Sighs found just enough room and mustered just enough run to nip Wacky Patty by a head in the $250,000 .

"That was the hard way," said Marty Wygod, who with his wife, Pam, bred and owns Silent Sighs in California.

Silent Sighs broke a step slowly from her rail post, then found herself boxed in by Wacky Patty and Usual Manner. Down the stretch, she finally found an opening between horses, then really had to dig down to defeat Wacky Patty by a neck. The winner returned $2.40, the lowest mutuel in the brief history of the Sunshine Millions, after finishing six furlongs in 1:10.82.

David Flores was aboard Silent Sighs for trainer Julio Canani. "I thought we had plenty left," said Flores.

Wacky Patty, the 4-1 second choice for trainer Cole Norman, finished another two lengths ahead of Dixie High in a field of six 3-year-old fillies.