06/28/2005 11:00PM

Eddington injured and retired

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ELMONT, N.Y. - Eddington, who appeared poised to make a run at the leadership of the handicap division, has been retired from racing due to a soft tissue tear in his right foreleg, trainer Mark Hennig said Wednesday.

Hennig said the injury was detected shortly after Eddington worked five furlongs in 1:00.24 last Friday over Belmont Park's main track. Eddington was pointing to Saturday's Grade 1, $500,000 Suburban Handicap, for which he would have been favored.

"We just feel like it's in his best interest to go ahead and retire him," Hennig said. "Obviously, it's disappointing because he's really developed into a top horse this year."

. Eddington retires with a record of 6-3-6 from 17 career starts and career earnings of $1,216,760. Willmott Stables Inc. campaigned Eddington, who will stand at stud at Claiborne Farm.

As a 3-year-old, Eddington won the Grade 3 Calder Derby and finished third in the Preakness, Travers, Wood Memorial and Gotham and fourth in the Belmont Stakes and Jim Dandy.