07/06/2006 11:00PM

Brother Derek to miss Haskell

Proud Tower Two, shown winning the $2 million Golden Shaheen in March, had ankle surgery Thursday and will be out for the rest of the year.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Brother Derek, the winner of the Santa Anita Derby who was fourth in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, will not start in the $1 million Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park on Aug. 6 because of a recent illness, trainer Dan Hendricks said.

Hendricks said that Brother Derek has recovered from a suspected virus detected in June but missed two weeks of training.

"He spiked a small temperature, probably some kind of virus," Hendricks said. "He had an elevated white blood count. We got backed up. We won't start working for a couple of weeks. We won't make the Haskell."

Hendricks said it is unclear when Brother Derek will return. Brother Derek could start in the $100,000 El Cajon Stakes at Del Mar on Sept. 2, using the race as a prep to the Super Derby at Louisiana Downs on Sept. 23.

"I won't know until I start breezing," Hendricks said. "There is a race or two at Del Mar. He just started back tack-walking. He hasn't gotten back to the track."

Owned by Cecil Peacock, Brother Derek has won 6 of 10 starts and $1,302,080. After the Preakness Stakes, Brother Derek underwent a battery of physical tests and was found to have suffered no injuries.

Proud Tower Too injured, out rest of year

Proud Tower Too, the winner of the $2 million Golden Shaheen sprint in Dubai in March, underwent surgery on Thursday to have a bone chip removed from an ankle, trainer Sal Gonzalez said.

The injury was detected in late June and will prevent Proud Tower Too from starting again this year.

Daniel Cardenas, whose Tricar Stable owns Proud Tower Too, and Gonzalez had hoped to run Proud Tower Too in the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Churchill Downs in November.

Gonzalez described the bone chip "as a flake." The injury was noticed after Proud Tower Too returned to training at Hollywood Park after being given most of the spring off.

"He did it two weeks ago when he had his first work back," Gonzalez said. "He'll be out for four months, and we'll have to start all over. It happens."

Proud Tower Too, 4, has won four stakes in the past year, including the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes at Santa Anita in December. In Dubai, Proud Tower Too earned $1.2 million by beating fellow California-bred Thor's Echo by 1 1/4 lengths in the six-furlong Golden Shaheen on a straightaway. Proud Tower Too has won 7 of 19 starts and $1,632,264.

"He's young," Gonzalez said. "He's only 4. We've got plenty of time to come back."

Intercontinental's Palomar win under appeal

The owner Marsha Naify lodged an appeal on Friday of a decision by a panel of stewards Wednesday to uphold Intercontinental's victory in the 2005 Palomar Breeders' Cup Handicap at Del Mar.

Naify owns Amorama, who finished second to Intercontinental. The other owners and trainers who had starters in the Palomar argued to the stewards that Intercontinental should be disqualified because she received a Lasix shot too close to post time.

In an e-mail notifying the California Horse Racing Board of Naify's appeal, attorney Roger Licht, a former chairman of the CHRB, argued that Intercontinental's vet failed to accurately report when she received Lasix, which allowed the filly to run.

"Had the vet properly reported the time of the shot, the filly would have been scratched," Licht wrote. "To allow the vet's impropriety to shield the filly from a scratch is a misapplication of California Law and the CHRB Rules."

Lasix shots must be administered no sooner than four hours to post time. Intercontinental was administered Lasix three hours and 40 minutes to post, according to arguments presented in a 35-minute hearing on June 5.

Last October, veterinarian Amy Lee Nevens was fined $750 for filing a false veterinarian's report that indicated the Lasix shot was administered at the proper time.

Stewards Albert Christiansen, Martin Hamilton, and Darrel McHargue issued an 11-page decision on Wednesday, writing that Intercontinental "did not gain an unfair advantage when it raced with a late treatment of pre-race bleeder medication."

The case is likely to be heard before an administrative law judge.

Belmont toll weighs on Bob and John

Bob and John, the winner of the Wood Memorial Stakes who was eighth in the Belmont Stakes on June 10, may not start again this summer.

Trainer Bob Baffert said on Friday that Bob and John remains in training, but that a start in the Travers Stakes at Saratoga in August has been ruled out.

"I don't know when I'll run him," Baffert said. "It could change from week to week. He is breezing."

Bob and John worked a half-mile on June 30. Baffert expressed concern about the toll the Belmont Stakes, at 1 1/2 miles, had on Bob and John. Owned by Stonerside Stable, Bob and John's biggest win came in the Wood Memorial. He ran 17th in the Kentucky Derby.

Field size this meet higher than expected

Hollywood Park concludes its spring-summer meeting on July 16, and so far the meet has had bigger fields than track officials expected.

Through July 4, fields had averaged 8.12 starters, according to racing secretary Martin Panza. He hopes the figures will remain strong in the final week of the season.

"I haven't finished the meet above eight in a long time," Panza said.

Panza cited a better main track and lowered costs for workers' compensation insurance for trainers as factors in larger field sizes. Panza said he has heard fewer concerns from trainers about the condition of the main track. Lower insurance costs have allowed some trainers to get back into the game and others to expand their stables, he said.

Sunday's nine-race program drew 84 entries, counting three on the also-eligible list.

Some stakes this weekend will hurt the field-size average. There were four entrants for Saturday's Swaps Breeders' Cup Stakes, and five for Saturday's Hollywood Gold Cup and Sunday's Robert Kerlan Memorial Handicap.