11/03/2003 1:00AM

Etc. . . .


Thistledown has raised purses 8 percent across the board, effective immediately, for the remainder of the 2003 racing season, which runs through Dec. 15. The minimum purse for bottom $3,500 claimers will now be $6,600. . . . Trainer Ralph Martinez broke Stanley Roberts's 2001 Hoosier Park record of 42 wins in a season Saturday when he saddled Berkley's Gold to win the fifth race, giving Martinez 43 wins this year. Martinez added another win Sunday to pad his lead in the standings at 44-18 with four weeks remaining in the meet. . . . Jockey Jeremy Acridge separated a shoulder in a spill at Hoosier Park on Sunday when his mount, Hayfield, fell over a downed horse. Rahede Teague, aboard Bending the Rules, who broke down on the turn and was euthanized on the track, escaped serious injury. . . . Handle on Saturday's MBNA America Racing Challenge program at Los Alamitos, was $2,379,112, a record for a single card there. The amount topped the previous mark of $2,127,758, set on June 30, 1995. . . . The Maryland Jockey Club has changed its formula for distributing trainer awards for 2003. The trainer with the highest winning percentage (minimum 150 starts) at Pimlico and Laurel will receive $2,500, rather than $5,000, and $2,500 will be divided among the trainers with the highest starts-per-stall ratio in five categories.