05/17/2002 11:00PM

Woodlawn: Mr. O'Brien slips through


Mr. O'Brien, an Irish-bred 3-year-old colt trained by Michael Dickinson, shot through an opening on the rail to win the $100,000 Woodlawn Stakes.

Under patient handling by jockey Pat Day, Mr. O'Brien ($7.60) tracked behind early leaders Regal Sanction and Root With Style for the first six furlongs of the 1 1/8-mile race. In the stretch, when Regal Sanction began faltering and drifted off the rail, Day gave Mr. O'Brien his head and the horse sprinted home on the rail. Regal Sanction held on for second.

"I was counting on [Regal Action] coming off the corner a little bit and spreading out, and when we got to that point I called on the horse he jumped into it very gamely," said Day. "Not an overabundance of room in there, but he hung in there, fought hard, and once he overcame that horse he was home free. The horse was willing to do that so it worked out well."