Atswhatimtalknbout out of Belmont with foot injury

Friday, May 30th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

NEW YORK (AP) _ Atswhatimtalknbout has an injured right front hoof and won't run in the Belmont Stakes.

Trainer Ron Ellis said the 3-year-old colt developed a second quarter crack Thursday, a day after working a mile in a slow time of 1:46.80 at Churchill Downs.

``Luckily, he came out of the work perfect,'' Ellis said. ``I just don't want to press him and have something else spring up because he was protecting that foot.''

A fast-closing fourth in the Kentucky Derby, Atswhatimtalknbout skipped the Preakness and was considered among the top challengers to Derby and Preakness winner Funny Cide.

Funny Cide will attempt to win the Belmont on June 7 and become racing's 12th Triple Crown champion.

Atswhatimtalknbout developed an abscess last week that turned into a quarter crack _ a crack between the toe and heel. The quarter crack was patched, but after the workout, another crack began forming.

``The foot's just not stable,'' Ellis said. ``The right thing to do is to take him home and let the foot heal up. It's disappointing, but his better days are in front of him.''

Atswhatimtalknbout is owned by B. Wayne Hughes and Biscuit Stable, which includes director Steven Spielberg.

The possible field for the Belmont has 11 horses. Among the definite starters are Funny Cide, Empire Maker, Dynever, Ten Most Wanted, Scrimshaw, Best Minister and Supervisor. Still undecided were Midway Road, Go Rockin' Robin, Outta Here and Wild and Wicked.