07/18/2004 11:00PM

Paragallo cutting back stock


Owner Ernie Paragallo, who has campaigned top horses such as Artax and Unbridled's Song, plans to disperse the majority of his racing stock and broodmare band over the next several months.

According to Paragallo's trainer, Jennifer Pedersen, Paragallo is downsizing because of health concerns, though she would not be specific. Paragallo, 46, did not respond to phone messages on Monday seeking comment.

Pedersen said that Paragallo has "well over" 300 horses, including 52 2-year-olds, more than 60 yearlings, and more than 60 mares in foal. Pedersen oversees a string of 42 horses at Aqueduct and has another 18 at Delaware Park.

Pedersen said that Paragallo would consider selling horses privately as well as holding a dispersal sale. She said he would even consider giving horses to those who would absorb the expenses and split the earnings.

The top horses Paragallo currently owns are Redskin Warrior, winner of the Best Turn Stakes; Song of the Sword, who finished second in the Illinois Derby before running poorly in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness; and New York Hero, winner of the 2003 Lane's End Stakes.

Paragallo's stable had a decent winter, but has struggled since. The stable is 0 for 32 at Belmont after going 3 for 41 during the Aqueduct spring session. Overall this year, Paragallo's stable is 18-35-35 from 242 starters with earnings of $1,159,890.

Paragallo plans to keep his stallions, including Artax, the champion sprinter of 1999, and Unbridled's Song, the 1995 Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner.