07/05/2001 11:00PM

Forty One Carats euthanized

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MIAMI - Forty One Carats, a multiple stakes winner and owner of two track records, was euthanized recently after contracting an infection following surgery required to repair a condylar fracture suffered during the running of the Memorial Day Handicap at Calder on May 28.

Forty One Carats pulled up in distress after finishing a tiring fifth in the Memorial Day Handicap. The race was the 22nd start of a career that ends with seven wins, three seconds, one third and total earnings of $828,843. His most notable triumphs came in the Grade 2 Pegasus Handicap as a 3-year-old when he defeated Unbridled Jet and Talk's Cheap, setting a new Meadowlands course record of 1:45.40 at 1 1/8 miles and in the Smile Handicap at Calder last October, in which he established a track record of 1:08.95 for six furlongs. The Smile was the final victory of his outstanding career.

"He came out of the surgery fine and the prognosis was good, then he developed an infection," said David Fawkes, who trained Forty One Carats since his 3-year-old season for owners Walter, Sandra, and Tory New and the Buckingham Stable. "When he was good he was as good as any horse in the country. He also had a ton of heart because he ran so well, even though he endured foot problems his whole life."

Fawkes recalled Forty One Carats's best performances: "He came within a tick of the world record in the Pegasus," said Fawkes. "This horse had a lot of class. When he walked into the paddock if it was his day he really showed it. He was without a doubt the best horse I've ever trained."