10/17/2002 11:00PM

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The Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation announced Friday that it will fund a $50,000 study by Daniel A. Potter, entomology professor at the University of Kentucky, on effective ways to exterminate Eastern tent caterpillars on horse farms. Some research has linked the caterpillars with abortion-causing mare reproductive loss syndrome, and Potter's study will test various equine-safe extermination methods to eliminate caterpillar infestation before the insects can harm horses. . . . Meriel Tufnel, the first woman to ride a winner in Britain, died Wednesday at the age of 53 after a short illness. After her victory aboard the 50-1 Scorched Earth in the 1972 Goya Ladies Race at Kempton Park, Tufnel went on to become champion women's rider in Britain before her retirement in 1975. . . . Beginning Jan. 1, all-weather racing in Britain will begin taking 48-hour entries for the first time. Entries for all other races in Britain will continue to be taken on a 24-hour basis. . . . The Oct. 14 Pebbles Handicap at Belmont Park, a Grade 3 race scheduled for the turf but switched to the main track because of heavy rain, will be recorded as ungraded this year by the American Graded Stakes Committee.