12/11/2002 12:00AM

'Sandy' still shy of $2M


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Say Florida Sandy's bid to reach $2 million in earnings came up 1 3/4 lengths short when he finished second behind Sing Me Back Home in Wednesday's featured eighth race at a rainy Aqueduct.

Sent off as the 7-5 favorite in a classified allowance with a $54,000 purse, Say Florida Sandy pressed Sing Me Back Home outside through fractions of 23.63 and 47.24 seconds on an inner-dirt track labeled good, and was outkicked in the stretch.

Sing Me Back Home ($7), who had set the early pace in the Sport Page Handicap in his most recent start, finished strongly through the lane to run the distance in 1:10.99, and gave apprentice John McKee his second win of the afternoon.

Say Florida Sandy finished well under Aaron Gryder to wind up 3 1/4 lengths ahead of third-place finisher Big E E. Say Florida Sandy earned $10,800, pushing his total to $1,982,255 for owner John Rotella.

Laboccetta, Gold N Z on a roll

Trainer Frank Laboccetta Jr., who saddled Gold N Z Stable's Peakabbu Boy ($7.30) to a 7 1/2-length victory in Sunday's ninth race, saddled three more winners for the same owner on Wednesday's card, giving the connections four straight wins in a six-race span at this track.

Betwineyouandme ($4.30), who had been claimed for $18,000 in her most recent start Oct. 20, returned for a $10,500 tag and wired the opener under McKee.

Veri Light ($5.70), a shipper from Calder who had finished third in a $40,000 claiming race on Nov. 2, was also getting a trainer change to Laboccetta, and won the third race, a $50,000 claimer, with Richard Migliore up.

Salty N' Foxy ($5.50) completed the trifecta for Gold N Z and Laboccetta, winning the fifth race, an $18,000 claimer, also with Migliore aboard.

Laboccetta won with 14 of 42 starters on the inner track at Aqueduct's 2001-02 winter meet, and he has compiled a meet-leading 5-1-0 record with his first seven starters.

Ms. Rapunzel heads feature

Friday's feature is a third-level allowance at a mile and 70 yards for fillies and mares, and drew a field of six headed by Ms. Rapunzel.

Ms. Rapunzel, who notched her first two wins on turf for Bruce Levine, returned from a short layoff to win a second-level allowance out of the chute on the main track two weeks ago. She has raced once before on the inner track, back on Feb. 24, 2001, when she rallied for second at 25-1 in her career debut.

The remaining five all finished out of the money in their last starts, including Chinesgut and Any Scoop, who were claimed by Roy Sedlacek and Gary Contessa, respectively.

Any Scoop has been out of the money in six of her last seven starts, but has won three of seven lifetime on the inner track.