11/25/2003 1:00AM

Capote retired from stud

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Capote, champion 2-year-old male of 1986 and sire of Boston Harbor, the champion 2-year-old male of 1996, has been retired from stallion duty.

A statement from Three Chimneys farm in Midway, Ky., where the 19-year-old Capote had stood since 1992, said that "a combination of fertility and neurological problems . . . dictate his retirement."

A son of Seattle Slew out of Too Bald, Capote won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile and Norfolk Stakes en route to his Eclipse Award.

Since 1996, Capote's annual progeny earnings have never been below $3 million and currently stand at $4,032,436 for 2003. Boston Harbor's earnings of $1,928,605 as a 2-year-old set a North American record.

Among Capote's stakes winners are Surfing Home, a horse of the year in South Africa; Basim, a champion 2-year-old colt in Ireland; and Grade 1 winners Capote Belle, Matty G, Capdiva, and Agincourt.

Through Monday, Capote had sired 52 stakes winners from 13 crops to race, and his offspring have earned $40,703,659.