09/30/2001 12:00AM

San Nicholas, Santos team to win Kingland


EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The team of San Nicolas and jockey Jose Santos have shared two important events this year at the Meadowlands. Together they finished second opening day in Santos's first mount back after a wrist injury. Saturday night, the colt earned the rider his first stakes victory since that injury in the $100,000 Kingland Stakes.

The Jeff Bonde-trainee stormed up to pacesetter Run Kush Run to get a slim nose advantage in the six-furlong test for 3-year-olds. He paid $17.00 and stopped the clock in 1:08.77.

"This horse looked like a picture tonight," said Santos. "Last time was my first ride in four months and he ran really well behind City Zip [in the Bergen County Stakes]. Tonight he was just so good and I know he can really keep improving the more ground he gets."

Third-placed finisher Sea of Green capped off the overall MATCH Series championship simply by starting the race for owner-trainer Janis Gerace. The $190,000 in bonuses and prizes he earned through his campaign for Gerace set a new record for the series.

Manofglory lucked into his fourth straight victory when Governor's Pride bolted to the outside in the $50,000 Thomas Edison Handicap for turf sprinters.

Owned by Raymond Dweck, trained by Ben Perkins and ridden by Eibar Coa, the four-year-old gelding took over in the lane while Jeremy Rose struggled with Governor's Pride turning for home. Governor's Pride held second on the outside fence with Sejm Boogie in third.