02/17/2004 12:00AM

Roughed-up 'Attire' okay

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OZONE PARK, N.Y. - It doesn't appear that a scary incident during the running of Saturday's $150,000 John B. Campbell Breeders' Cup Handicap at Laurel Park has left Evening Attire any worse for the wear, according to the gelding's trainer, Pat Kelly.

Evening Attire, the heavy favorite in the Campbell, finished third, but was placed second because he was roughly interfered with by Rogue Agent during the stretch run. Ole Faunty won the race and Rogue Agent, who was ridden by Norberto Arroyo Jr., crossed the finish line second and was disqualified to third.

Shaun Bridgmohan, Evening Attire's rider, went through an opening on the rail and was squeezed hard by Rogue Agent. Evening Attire nearly fell over the rail, but he quickly recovered and came with a determined outside move to finish 1 1/2 lengths behind Rogue Agent.

Arroyo received a 15-day suspension from the Laurel Park stewards because of the incident.

"I thought [Evening Attire] was going to win. He almost got through when he was hit," Kelly said Tuesday morning at Belmont Park. "He had an inside post and was boxed in the whole trip and just never had a chance. Luckily, it doesn't look like he hurt himself. I'll see how he is when I get him back to the track [Wednesday] or the next day."

Kelly has ruled out running Evening Attire in the $75,000 Stymie Handicap at Aqueduct on March 6 because he fears he will give away too much weight. The trainer said the earliest he probably would run Evening Attire next is in the $200,000 Excelsior Breeders' Cup Handicap at Aqueduct on April 3. Another race that Kelly mentioned for Evening Attire is the $500,000 Pimlico Special on May 14.

Trainer unhappy with Arroyo's ride

Mike Brice, Rogue Agent's trainer, said his horse would run back in the Stymie.

Brice was not at all happy with the steward's decision to disqualify Rogue Agent and was equally unhappy about how the race unfolded. Rogue Agent set a moderate pace in the Campbell, but Brice would have preferred if Arroyo had put more distance between himself and the field.

"My horse's best races are when you go on freely with him," Brice said. "The plan wasn't to rate him. Maybe [Arroyo] thought the right thing was going slow, but my horse could have gone [the half-mile] in 47 [seconds] and had a clear lead. I thought our best opportunity to beat Evening Attire, who we're giving [nine] pounds to, was to open up on him."

Arroyo will be on suspension when Rogue Agent runs back in the Stymie, so the horse will have a new rider.

Papua's next undecided

Trainer Mike Hushion is weighing his options with Papua, the winner of Sunday's Hollie Hughes Handicap at Aqueduct. It was Papua's second consecutive win in the six-furlong Hollie Hughes for New York-breds.

Last year after winning the Hollie Hughes, which was delayed a couple of times because of bad weather and run on March 2, Hushion ran Papua back in the Grade 1 Carter on April 12, and the horse finished fourth.

The next sprint race at Aqueduct is the Grade 3 Toboggan Handicap on March 13. "It's a tough call where we go next," Hushion said. "Do I wait three months or run him back in 10 days? If I put him on a full winter schedule, what will I have later?"

On his way to winning the Hollie Hughes, Papua hurdled the prone Bossanova, who broke his right foreleg in the stretch and fell. Hushion said the display of athleticism on Papua's part was pure "instinct."

Bossanova was euthanized because of his injuries.

Fourth start for Mr. Shoplifter, 5

Mr. Shoplifter, a half-brother to Put it Back, who won the 2001 Best Turn and Grade 2 Riva Ridge, is among seven older males entered in Thursday's $43,000 allowance feature for nonwinners of two races lifetime. There are no standouts in the field.

Mr. Shoplifter, a 5-year-old, is making his fourth career start in the six-furlong race and hasn't raced since April 2003.

Trained by Allen Jerkens, Mr. Shoplifter easily won a maiden race at Gulfstream Park last March and then finished a well-beaten second in his next start.

Ray Ganpath rides Mr. Shoplifter, who worked well at Belmont last Saturday.

Primo Nova has run well in each of his three starts and was up in time to win a maiden race on Jan. 11 for trainer Allen Iwinski, who saddled the winner of Monday's Rare Treat, Austin's Mom.

* Scary Bob, who will run in Saturday's $75,000 Best Turn Stakes, worked Tuesday over Belmont's training track in 48.63 seconds, the fourth fastest of 13 half-mile works.

* Sunday at Aqueduct, Redskin Warrior - the most likely starter among the three nominees to the Best Turn by trainer Jennifer Pedersen - worked five furlongs in a bullet 1:01.09. Bellagio Bob, another probable for the six-furlong Best Turn, worked a half-mile on Sunday at Aqueduct in a bullet 49.45. Others pointing to the race are Excellent Band, Matsui, Ottawa Chief, and Smokume.