05/16/2004 12:00AM

Perfect trip, easy score for Winter Garden


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Winter Garden parlayed an ideal stalking trip into an easy score in Sunday's $174,250 Hendrie Handicap, a Grade 3 fixture for fillies and mares at Woodbine.

Handpainted, the 4-5 favorite, dueled with Winter Garden's stablemate, Brass in Pocket, through splits of :22.48 and :45.33 in the six and a half-furlong dash. Winter Garden raced just off the leaders in a three-wide position, and hit the front at the head of the stretch before coasting home on top by three lengths.

Longshot Spanish Play rallied wide to beat Handpainted by a neck for second in the five-horse field. The final time was 1:16.76.

"I had so much horse from the word 'go'," said David Clark, who rode Winter Garden. "The only problem was that she took me to the lead a little too early."

Winter Garden ($5.60) earned $96,750 for owner Frank DiGiulio Jr. and trainer Bob Tiller.