01/24/2004 1:00AM

Peeping Tom wins like old self

Email

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - The old man ain't done yet.

Peeping Tom, the 7-year-old gelding who appeared to be tailing off, rebounded in dramatic fashion Saturday, running down Don Six in the final strides to win the $83,025 by a head before 4,669 at Aqueduct. It was another 2 1/4 lengths back to Super Fuse in third.

Sing Me Back Home, 2-1 favorite Way to the Top, Crafty Song, Spooky Mulder, and Crossing Point completed the order of finish. Sunray Spirit was eased.

It was the 13th victory in 43 starts for Peeping Tom, who in 2001 won the Grade 1 Carter Handicap. Peeping Tom had been dull in his last three starts, however, which explains why he was sent off at 10-1 odds.

Peeping Tom also had a new rider, Ariel Smith, because his regular rider, Shaun Bridgmohan, was aboard Don Six. Bridgmohan, who had ridden Peeping Tom in 14 of his previous 15 starts, said he had already committed to Don Six before he knew Peeping Tom was running.

It looked like Bridgmohan was on the winner after Don Six put away Crossing Point turning for home and opened up a two-length lead in the stretch. But Peeping Tom, who had only one horse beaten entering the far turn, split horses to reach contention around the turn and ran down Don Six nearing the wire. Peeping Tom covered the six furlongs in 1:10.44 and returned $23.40 to win.

Trainer Pat Reynolds was in Florida on Saturday, but earlier in the week said he had made some adjustments regarding Peeping Tom, including treating the gelding with ulcer medication.

"We thought he was ready to win the last couple of races or at least run a decent race and this race he turned it around," said Lou Milazzo, who owns Peeping Tom along with his daughter Danielle as part of Flatbird Stable. "Pat thought he had an ulcer problem, and he treated him for it this week, and that might have been the trick."

Bridgmohan, who said Don Six "gave me everything he had," tipped his hat to Reynolds. "Pat did a great job, congratulations to him," Bridgmohan said. "Take nothing away from him or his horse."