08/01/2006 12:00AM

Prison Bound back quickly off win


SANTA ROSA, Calif. - Trainer Ed Moger Jr. wasn't sure what to expect when Prison Bound was sent to him after more than a year on the sidelines.

He got his answer in Prison Bound's comeback, a solid 3 1/4-length victory at Solano on July 12.

Moger brings the 4-year-old gelding back in Thursday's Sonoma County Fair feature, a $25,000 optional claimer at five furlongs on the turf.

Claimed by Moger and owners Bruce and Jeanne Thayre for $40,000 from his debut, the speedy Prison Bound was second for a $55,000 tag after setting the pace in his second start. He then won a straight maiden race before going to the sidelines.

"Even though he was off for a year, it was a minor injury," Moger said. "They just wanted to give the horse plenty of time."

The patience of Moger and the Thayres was amply rewarded in Prison Bound's comeback.

Though he hopped at the start, he quickly opened up a lead down the backstretch and extended it at every call in a $40,000 starter allowance race.

"He seems like a really nice horse," Moger said. "He's ready to run, and this race came up. He seems to have nice turf breeding, so we wanted to take a shot because it could open more options for him."

Prison Bound won his comeback off only four works but had plenty of long gallops, Moger said. He has a solid 48-second half-mile drill since his last race.

Only two of his seven rivals have won on the turf.

Athlete was third at this distance on the Bay Meadows turf in his first start after a 51-week layoff. He graduated in a turf sprint at Hollywood Park.

Mr. Ching, a turf sprint winner at Hollywood Park last year, makes his first start in more than a year.

The field also includes the comebacker Choice Action, who will be making his turf debut after more than a year on the sidelines. He won a claiming race for this tag at Hollywood Park last year.

Rounding out the field are Retirees Three, My Boomerang, Ten in Front, and Dancin Candy.