10/03/2001 11:00PM

Lundy to handle Paragallo runners

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ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - Dick Lundy has taken a job as the private trainer for owner Ernie Paragallo, the latest step in Lundy's return to national prominence. Lundy will oversee a string of 40 to 50 horses that will be split this winter between Aqueduct and Fair Grounds, Lundy has based at Arlington the last two summers and wintered in Florida last year. In the 1980's he trained for the Payson stable before becoming the private trainer for Alan Paulson, overseeing 125 regally-bred horses. In 1992, Lundy and Paulson split over a dispute concerning financial irregularities, and Lundy went home to Ohio, training sporadically, or not at all, for most of the 1990's before putting together a solid stable last year.

He now goes to work for the New York-based Paragallo, a prominent owner who has made his mark with horses like Unbridled's Song and the champion sprinter Artax.

"Dick Lundy's one of the best horsemen out there right now," Paragallo said. "We've been waiting to get someone like this."

Lundy said he will eventually give up most of the horses now in training at Arlington, though a couple will remain in his care. "I'm fairly pleased with the summer I've had in Chicago," Lundy said. "But I would like to gear things up, just like everyone else does."

Lundy has won races at a strong clip both of the last summers, excelling with turf fillies. He has been training for clients who are involved in the bloodstock business, and part of his job has been enhancing the resumes of horses on their way to a broodmare career. That will continue to be a part of his job with Paragallo, who is developing his own breeding operation, including two prominent stallions, Unbridled's Song and Artax.

"He's trying to do a couple different things, Lundy said, "supporting the stallions and also to run in the major leagues." Paragallo has had horses stabled at Fair Grounds in the past, without having much success, but his stock should make a greater impact this winter. "That was the third string before," he said. "This will be the first string."

Flinch needs knee surgery

Lundy, meanwhile, reported that the turf filly Flinch, who won three straight grass races at Arlington this summer, was to have surgery to remove a bone chip from her knee and would not race again this year.

"We're going to take it out, and she should come back and race again next year," Lundy said.

Flinch finished third in her last start, an overnight stakes here that was switched from turf onto the main track, where Flinch had never raced. Before that, Flinch ran quickly through her allowance conditions, including a win over the promising Dance Memories, and appeared headed to stakes competition.

Lundy also said he plans to start Flows Like Wine in the Silver Maiden Stakes here Monday. Perhaps the most impressive dirt maiden winner here all meet, Flows Like Wine has won both of her races on the main track. Lundy said she is one of the horses who will remain in his barn after he begins working full time for Paragallo.

Soccer deal falls through

Talks between Arlington Park and the Chicago Fire, the professional soccer team, failed to produce an agreement for the Fire to build a stadium on Arlington's property.

The proposed stadium would have sat just west of Arlington's racetrack on land now occupied by a parking lot. Arlington is one of several potential sites explored by the Fire, which is seeking a new home for next year.

Arlington's president and CEO, Steve Sexton, said talks between the track and the Fire had bogged down about 2 1/2 weeks ago.