06/02/2004 11:00PM

Boots on Sunday retired


GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - Boots on Sunday, who was scheduled to make his comeback from a tendon injury last Monday in the $50,000 Carter McGregor Jr. Memorial Stakes at Lone Star Park, has been retired, said his trainer, Danny Pish.

"It's official," said Pish, who trained Boots on Sunday for Wilton Scott.

Boots on Sunday had worked extremely well for his comeback, but was withdrawn from consideration for the McGregor on entry day. Pish said an examination revealed a small tear to his tendon near the original tear that had forced Boots on Sunday to the sidelines in October 2002.

The original injury has healed, and Pish said Boots on Sunday is moving soundly. He was retired to Scott's farm in Huntsville, Texas.

"I put in to be his guardian," said Pish, who would like to see Boots on Sunday, a 7-year-old gelding, return to his barn in the future to work as a stable pony.

Boots on Sunday was considered one of the region's best sprinters for several years, and was also key in helping Pish build his stable into one of the strongest in Texas.

Boots on Sunday won 14 of 35 starts and $417,965. Of his victories, seven came in stakes. He is a son of Pine Bluff and was bred in Texas by Scott.

Five-win day propels Asmussen

Steve Asmussen won five of the 11 races run Monday at Lone Star to take over the top spot in the trainer standings. He leads the standings with 40 wins through Thursday, two more than the previous leader, Cole Norman.

Asmussen won four stakes during the Lone Star Million Day program Monday, and also won the nightcap. All of his winners were ridden by visiting jockey Shane Sellers, with their biggest win coming in the Grade 3, $200,000 WinStar Distaff with Academic Angel.

Spanish Empire, who ran third for Asmussen in the Grade 3, $300,000 Lone Star Park Handicap on Monday, is going to be freshened. Earlier this year, the horse won the Grade 3 Fifth Season Breeders' Cup and the $60,000 Louisiana Handicap.

Asmussen's five-win day was not a personal best for the trainer at Lone Star. He won seven races at the track on a 14-race card on closing day in 2002.

* Lone Star is offering free admission Saturday to patrons with the last name of Jones, in honor of Smarty Jones's bid to win the Triple Crown.