04/05/2004 12:00AM

Pimlico: Spirited Game scores as stalker

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A return to sprinting and a change in strategy helped Spirited Game ($20) score a three-quarter-length victory in the $50,000 Smart Halo Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.

Unlike her most recent start, when she sprinted to the lead and faded in a route, Spirited Game was taken back early by jockey Abel Castellano Jr., as instructed by trainer Ron Cartwright.

Sixth of seven with two furlongs remaining, Spirited Game swung three wide at the top of the stretch and ran down pacesetter Highgate Park, covering six furlongs in 1:12.67.