By Francis LaBelle Jr.

Winter Park Partners’ Wishful Tomcat won his third consecutive race and became a graded-stakes winner at Aqueduct Racetrack on Saturday afternoon, taking jockey Ramon Dominguez to a front-running 1 ¾-length victory over That’srightofficer in the 63rd running of the Grade 3, $110,100 Discovery Handicap for three-year-olds at nine furlongs.

“He has a heart of gold,” said trainer Gary Contessa, after the Tactical Cat colt returned $16.20 to win. “All I can say is, `Watch out New York-breds!’ I would like to see him dominate stakes races here this winter. It’s extra cold today; maybe it will push out the Florida trainers sooner.”

The cold and wind seemed to agree with Wishful Tomcat, who broke from the rail and took Dominguez to the lead, where he set a pace of 24.23, 48.66, 1:14.24 and 1:40.09 on the fast track. He pulled away from Web Gem, who pressed him early and held off a late run by That’srightofficer to win in 1:53.28.

“We wanted to take advantage of his post position and his tactical speed,” Dominguez said. “Gary Contessa (trainer) knew the horse to the outside (Lieutenant Ron) had speed. I found myself in front and just let him roll. I didn’t know how much horse I was going to have turning for home, but when I asked him, he re-broke all over again and finished up full of run.”

Ready Set was third, followed by Coach Shaw, favored Lieutenant Ron, Premium Gold and Web Gem.

Racing resumes at Aqueduct on Sunday with first-race post of 12:30 p.m. There will be a Pick 6 carryover on Sunday of $45,402.

DISCOVERY HANDICAP QUOTES

Winning trainer Gary Contessa of Wishful Tomcat (No. 1): “He has a heart of gold. All I can say is, `Watch out New York-breds!’ I would like to see him dominate stakes races here this winter. It’s extra cold today; maybe it will push out the Florida trainers sooner.”

Wining jockey Ramon Dominguez: “We wanted to take advantage of his post position and his tactical speed. Gary Contessa (trainer) knew the horse to the outside (Lieutenant Ron) had speed. I found myself in front and just let him roll. I didn’t know how much horse I was going to have turning for home, but when I asked him, he re-broke all over again and finished up full of run.”