06/10/2001 11:00PM

Flame Thrower career threatened by leg fracture


ELMONT, N.Y. - Flame Thrower, who finished a gutty second in Saturday's Riva Ridge Stakes, was scheduled for surgery Monday night in Southern California to repair a lateral condylar fracture of the left front cannon bone.

Owner Gary Garber said he would wait until the surgery was performed before making a decision on Flame Thrower's future, but was pessimistic the colt would race again.

"We won't know until we do the surgery, but if he's not going to be as good as he was, he'll be a stud horse," Garber said.

As a 2-year-old, Flame Thrower won the Best Pal, Del Mar Futurity, and Norfolk Stakes before suffering his first defeat when he finished eighth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. He had a knee chip removed in the winter and returned with a second-place finish against older horses in the Maryland Breeders' Cup Handicap on Preakness Day.

Put It Back, who recorded his fifth consecutive victory in the Riva Ridge, will not run again until Saratoga, trainer Allen Jerkens said. His next start could come in the $125,000 Amsterdam Stakes on Aug. 3, a prep for the Grade 1 King's Bishop on Aug. 25.

City Zip, who scratched out of the Riva Ridge when an old quarter crack popped open, is also pointing for the Amsterdam. Trainer Linda Rice said she is also considering running him in the Jersey Shore Breeders' Cup Handicap at Monmouth Park on July 4.

Peeping Tom resumes training

Peeping Tom, who came out of his second-place finish in the Metropolitan Handicap with a bruised left front foot, resumed training last Friday, according to trainer Pat Reynolds.

Reynolds said that if all goes well Peeping Tom, who won the Grade 1 Carter Handicap and the Grade 2 General George earlier this year, could make his next start in the Tom Fool Handicap on July 4.

"We gave him ample time because feet can be tricky," Reynolds said. "He's traveling sound."

Zito proud of A P Valentine

Sure, he would like to win the Belmont Stakes, but trainer Nick Zito was feeling quite content Monday morning after a very successful weekend. One day after saddling A P Valentine, who finished second behind the monster known as Point Given in the Belmont Stakes, Zito won Sunday's Grade 2 $250,000 Brooklyn Handicap with Albert the Great.

Zito also won a preliminary allowance race on Sunday with Gulch Legacy for Mary Lou Whitney.

"What better weekend could I possibly have?" Zito said.

Although this was the fifth time in the nine Belmonts in which Zito has participated that one of his runners finished second, Zito said he admired A P Valentine's courage to persevere as Point Given ran away from him.

"Most of the time when a horse pulls away from you they have every reason to stop," said Zito, who has five seconds, a third, and a fourth from 11 Belmont starters. "He showed so much courage and fought hard to the wire to finish a well-deserved second. He gets that fire from a bunch of royal knights in his family. That's why Mr. John [Magnier] and Coolmore wanted him [for stud duty]."

Zito said he planned to ship A P Valentine this week to Saratoga where he will get a brief rest before he begins training toward the Aug. 4 Jim Dandy and Aug. 25 Travers.

Zito said Albert the Great came out of the Brooklyn in good order and will be pointed to the $500,000 Suburban Handicap here on July 1. Albert the Great is 5 for 6 at Belmont.

"He's certainly one of the best horses in America. He loves his home track and I'm very happy for the Farmers," said Zito, referring to Tracy and Carol Farmer, who own Albert the Great.

Bonneville needs fast track

Trainer John Kimmel hopes for a fast track Wednesday when he sends out Bonneville in a second-level allowance race restricted to New York-bred fillies and mares at seven furlongs.

Kimmel said that Bonneville "didn't like the mud too much" when she finished second as the even-money favorite at this level on May 23. Richard Migliore, the meet's leading rider with 30 victories, has the call from post 3.

Bonneville will be just outside the two horses who figure to give her the most trouble, Boundanddetermined and Look Upon. Boundanddetermined makes her first start for trainer Teresa Pompay and comes out of a fourth-place finish in the Bouwerie Stakes. Look Upon has a record of 2-2-0 from four starts and the only horse to beat her, Bon Fearless, is not in this field. Look Upon finished second at odds of 41-1 in the Bouwerie.

* Hook and Ladder popped open a quarter crack while finishing last in Saturday's True North Handicap. He will get at least 60 days off, Kimmel said.

* E Dubai, the runner-up to Hero's Tribute in the Grade 2 Peter Pan Stakes on May 26, worked five furlongs in 1:02.49 Sunday. He is preparing for a rematch with Hero's Tribute in the Dwyer Stakes on July 8.

- additional reporting by Jay Privman