03/22/2006 12:00AM

Corinthian out of Triple Crown


Corinthian, who was disqualified from first in the Fountain of Youth Stakes, has suffered a minor fracture of his left hind ankle and will miss the entire Triple Crown series, his connections said Wednesday.

According to Dr. Stephen Carr, the racing manager for Corinthian's owners, Centennial Farms, Corinthian suffered a "very small hairline crack on the top of and the front of his long pastern bone in his left hind ankle."

Carr said he believes the injury occurred during an open gallop that Corinthian had Saturday over the Belmont Park training track. Corinthian, who spent the winter at the Palm Meadows training center in Boynton Beach, Fla., had just returned from there on Thursday.

Carr said the crack is so minor it took digital X-rays to confirm it.

"It's a common injury," said Carr. "It does not require surgery. It has a very good prognosis, and it only requires walking about 30 days for it to heal and for him to be able to return to training. He will obviously miss the Triple Crown races and therefore point for such races as the Dwyer, Jim Dandy, and Travers."

Carr said that Corinthian would remain in trainer Jimmy Jerkens's Belmont Park barn.

Corinthian had developed into a serious Kentucky Derby contender after he rallied smartly from off the pace to finish first in the Fountain of Youth last month at Gulfstream Park. He was disqualified to third, however, after he veered in on First Samurai, then veered out, carrying First Samurai and Flashy Bull out during the stretch run of the race.

Corinthian had been pointing to the Wood Memorial on April 8.