03/19/2006 12:00AM

That Tat is all that in Hot Springs

Sunny Taylor / Coady Photography
That Tat, Cliff Berry up, wins the $50,000 Hot Springs Stakes on Sunday.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - That Tat won the $50,000 Hot Springs Stakes for the second straight year on Sunday, when he dug in for a neck win over Level Playingfield over a sloppy track at Oaklawn Park. It was another half-length back in third to Rodeo's Castle.

That Tat ($22.40) also won last year's Hot Springs by a neck over Level Playingfield, and that race was also run in the slop. This year, That Tat stalked the pace in third early, as Bubba Gum and Rodeo's Castle raced together through fractions of 21.41 seconds for the opening quarter and 45.82 for the half-mile mark. That Tat overtook those two in the stretch, and dug in for the win, covering six furlongs in 1:10.47.

"He was on his 'A' game today," winning trainer Cole Norman said of That Tat, who is 8.

Cliff Berry rode the winner for Ken Murphy, who claimed That Tat for $20,000 in 2002. The gelding has now won 17 of 51 starts and $592,485. Norman said That Tat could make his next start in the Grade 3, $150,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap at Oaklawn on April 13.