05/28/2004 11:00PM

Peeping Tom a graded stakes winner again


BENSALEM, Pa. - Perhaps he is a couple of seasons removed from his glory years, but give Peeping Tom the right conditions and the old guy can still get it done. In Saturday's $100,000 at Philadelphia Park, Peeping Tom, a 7-year-old gelding, took advantage of a contested early pace and rallied boldly to get up in the final strides and claim the Grade 3 sprint stakes.

The victory was the first in a graded stakes race for Peeping Tom since May 2001, when he won the Grade 1 Carter, and was only his second victory in his last nine starts. But he remains a consistent, late-running threat. Saturday's race was the 48th of his career, resulted in his 14th victory, and boosted his lifetime earnings to $1,388,547.

Peeping Tom was sixth in the field of seven for the first half-mile of the race. On the front end, Kazoo and Crossing Point were dueling for the lead, with Secret Run, Richierichierich, and Spooky Mulder all within hailing distance. The quarter-mile was run in 22.12 seconds, and the half in 45.36 seconds. The track was fast, but dull.

Richierichierich moved boldly while four paths wide on the far turn to take the lead and appeared long gone at midstretch. But he shortened stride noticeably late. Peeping Tom, racing just inside of favored Highway Prospector, seized the opportunity. He got up in the final strides to beat Highway Prospector by a half-length, with Richierichierich another neck back in third.

Peeping Tom ($10.60) covered the six furlongs in 1:11.05. Patrick Reynolds trains Peeping Tom for the Flatbird Stable of Louis Milazzo and his daughter, Danielle.

"From the start, everyone was sending," said Ariel Smith, who rode Peeping Tom. "I thought the race might fall apart. He dug in at the eighth pole."