02/01/2006 1:00AM

Etc. . . .


Total purses and handle in North America both fell in 2005 compared to 2004, the first time that both have fallen in the same year since 1993, according to statistics released by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association and Equibase on Wednesday. Total parimutuel handle on Thoroughbred racing fell to $14,580,757,317 in 2005, down 3.43 percent from $15,099,011,926 in 2004, and purses fell to $1,080,742,875 from $1,092,556,395, a decline of 1.08 percent. . . . Jockey Bill Troilo, a veteran of the Kentucky circuit, is scheduled for knee surgery for the second time within a year later this month and will be out of action indefinitely. Results of a magnetic resonance imaging test this week revealed torn cartilage, said Troilo, 44. . . . Sam Siciliano, the publicity director at Pimlico Race Course during the 1970's and 1980's and a racing journalist, died Tuesday in Shrewsbury, N.J., of congestive heart failure at age 89. Siciliano was also a regular contributor to Daily Racing Form on New Jersey breeding and racing.