02/15/2007 12:00AM

Thinking of Money looks ready to go

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SAN MATEO, Calif. - When a horse returns after more than a year on the sidelines, there's always a question of how the horse will come back.

Monty Meier, who handles trainer Brian Koriner's northern California string, is confident that Thinking of Money, who has not run since winning a starter allowance race on Aug. 18, 2005, could prove very tough in her comeback in a first-level allowance Saturday at Bay Meadows.

"The way she acts tells me she's ready," he said. "She nips at everybody when they walk by her stall. She's being aggressive, which is a good sign."

Thinking of Money has two wins and a second-place finish in three career starts. Koriner purchased her privately for clients E-Racing.Com and Julie Berta after she won her debut for a $25,000 claiming price at Calder.

She has six rivals in the six-furlong race, including Sweet Merlot, a winner of three straight, and other recent winners Cahill Royalty and Steppin Out Rose.

Thinking of Money injured her shoulder one month after her last race. She tried to come back last June, but the shoulder woes popped up again.

After another five months on the sidelines, she has not missed a beat, recording 10 solid works since December.

Meier said that Koriner gave the Thinking of Money extra time because he thinks she has great potential, and that the filly had no problems getting back into the training routine.

"The first time we breezed her [after the layoff], she knew what it was all about," he said. "and she had no trouble breaking from the gate."

Thinking of Money should be plenty fit, with three good six-furlong works, one a bullet, and a half-mile bullet drill in her final prep.

"She's worked just like we wanted her to," Meier said.

That she won at first asking and has never run a bad race gives Meier confidence she will give a good effort in her first start back. Thinking of Money should be able to get a good stalking trip from her outside post.

Rounding out the field are Dominadora, fourth in her comeback from a 15-month layoff following a debut win; Serafina Lady, second against similar going a mile last time; and Tucker's Tune.