10/22/2007 11:00PM

Patience paid off for Mason

EmailSAN MATEO, Calif. - Trainer Lloyd Mason was hardly discouraged when Lookn for the Lord ran third last year in his first two starts. After all, he lost to the very talented Vicarino in his debut and then lost to stablemate Pacific Heat in his second start.

Mason detected something wrong shortly after Lookn for the Lord's second start last September, and tests showed a minor ankle injury. He was immediately taken out of training, given nearly a year to heal, and has come back better than ever this year at 3.

Lookn for the Lord comes into Thursday's Bay Meadows feature, a six-furlong $40,000 optional claimer, off an impressive maiden victory.

Lookn for the Lord was a solid second in his comeback on Aug. 19 at the Bay Meadows Fair and showed improvement in his Sept. 30 maiden win here. He has two nice works over the new Golden Gate Fields Tapeta surface since that victory.

Mason said the key to Lookn for the Lord's recovery was that they caught the injury early.

"It was just a tiny tear, but if you don't catch it early, it can damage a horse's career," he said.

"He came back in good shape. We sent him to Harris Farms where they have a special jogging machine. They run 20 minutes one way, then 20 minutes the other. It's great for rehabilitation because it keeps a rider off their backs, and going in different directions keeps them balanced. It's 90 feet in diameter so they're not going in a tight circle."

After 60 days of jogging, Lookn for the Lord arrived in Mason's barn quite fit and hasn't missed a beat since.

Mason is not looking too far ahead with Lookn for the Lord.

"I'm not sure if we'll stretch him out," Mason said, adding that Lookn for the Lord's sire is Lord Carson, who is known for getting sprinters.

Mason will also be represented by Ramos Fizz, who hasn't started since winning a $40,000 starter allowance last October. Mason had claimed him two starts before the win for $32,000.

"The owner decided to give him some time off, and he had a freak accident at the farm," Mason said. "It wasn't serious, but it got infected, and it took a long time to get him back. We were real excited when we claimed him, and he's worked nicely since coming back."

The two run uncoupled because they have different owners.