10/21/2002 11:00PM

Breeders' Cup is sold out for the first time


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - All those extra seats they have been putting up at Arlington will come in handy. Tuesday, Arlington and Breeders' Cup Limited declared the 2002 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships a sellout.

The sellout means no walk-up tickets will be made available to the general public on Breeders' Cup Day, which is unprecedented in Breeders' Cup history. There is no general admission to the event, and all fans will have an assigned seat.

Through a vast temporary-seating construction project that began in mid-August, Arlington increased its seating capacity by about 75 percent, and more than 45,000 will be in attendance Saturday. About 32,500 of the seats are temporary and will come down soon after this meet ends on Sunday.

Breeders' Cup tickets initially were allocated through a lottery system, through which selected applicants were given a choice of seats. After the lottery seats were distributed, Arlington made available the remaining seats - less 10,000 sold through the Breeders' Cup - to the public.

Ticket sales in some temporary seating areas slowed early this fall, and construction of an area that would have been know as Trackside Village was scrapped early this month. At the time, only about 10 percent of the 2,000 seats in the area had been sold.

The temporary seating project should be wrapped up Wednesday, with glitches to be worked out Thursday and Friday.

Colorful Tour tackles turf

Buck's Boy was the best of the Irish Acres Farm horses, and four years ago he won the Breeders' Cup Turf at Churchill Downs.

Thursday at Arlington, Colorful Tour, the best Irish Acres Farm horse of his generation, starts in the $45,000 Paradise Creek Handicap, a 1 1/8-mile turf race for 3-year-olds on Thursday.

Like Buck's Boy, Colorful Tour is an Irish Acres homebred, but Buck's Boy's trainer, Noel Hickey, isn't working with Colorful Tour right now. Hickey, whose wife Margaret is listed as owner of Irish Acres, is in the final phase of a suspension, during which Irish Acres has employed three different trainers. This spring the horses ran for trainer Susan Conklin, who gave way to Alfonso Razo this summer. Lisa Wintermote, who has been training since Jan. 1 at the Irish Acres facility near Ocala, Fla., recently replaced Razo here.

Colorful Tour and other Irish Acres horses were based at a northern Illinois training center this summer, and they haven't run well at Arlington. But the stable recently moved to Hawthorne, where Colorful Tour turned in a strong six-furlong work in 1:12.60 on Oct. 16.

A small, unimposing chestnut, Colorful Tour is the leading Illinois-bred 3-year-old. He has captured three major statebred dirt stakes and finished second to War Emblem this spring at Sportsman's Park, but his turf ability remains unknown, and he has not raced since July 27. If he can overcome the layoff and transfer his ability to turf, Colorful Tour can beat a so-so field.

If not, bettors can choose between Major Rhythm, Loup Masque, and Macaw. Major Rhythm finished a close fourth in the Grade 1 Secretariat earlier this meet; Loup Masque makes his U.S. debut for trainer Christophe Clement; and Macaw finished fourth in the Grade 2 Jamaica, his first start in this country.

Duchossois on the duck

Arlington chairman Dick Duchossois is running out of chances to win a race at his own track. Duchossois's luck has been tough all meet, and through last week his horses had compiled a record of 35-0-3-7 here. Several raced well enough to have won, but Duchossois can't seem to get a break.

Wednesday, he had a chance with Apt to Be, who was to have started as a logical contender in an optional claiming race. Thursday, Duchossois and his principal trainer Chris Block turn to Good Humor, who is part of a short field in the seventh race.

Good Humor hasn't started since Nov. 14, but she ran well over this surface last year, winning two allowance races by a combined 15 lengths. Good Humor's works for her comeback have been steady and swift, and because her connections enter her for the race's $75,000 claiming option, she faces the sort of third-level allowance horses she has already beaten.