11/30/2006 1:00AM

Stakes canceled after small draw


SAN MATEO, Calif. - The Winners' Foundation, a six-furlong overnight handicap scheduled for Saturday, was supposed to give Bay Meadows racing fans a look at Vicarino, a talented 2-year-old who set a track record at the Big Fresno Fair on Oct. 13. But with only four horses signed up, the race was canceled. In addition to Vicarino, three youngsters trained by Jerry Hollendorfer were entered as an uncoupled entry, but a fifth runner could not be found.

The card already had one five-horse race and three six-horse races.

Racing secretary Tom Doutrich said he tried to convince management to run the Winners' Foundation with four.

"We were afraid of ending up with only a three-horse field or maybe even only two," said one member of the Bay Meadows management team.

Bay Meadows has been plagued by scratches this year and has already run three races with fields of three, including two on a Friday night card Nov. 10. It has also run seven races with only four entries, which necessitated the cancellation of show wagering for those races.

Only seven runners were even nominated for the Winners' Foundation. One horse based in Southern California was to be nominated but sustained a minor injury.

Doutrich said that stakes coordinator Greg Brent called several trainers in Southern California and Turf Paradise, but was unable to generate much interest in the race.

The two Southern California-based runners that were nominated decided to stay home, where first-level allowance races for 2-year-olds, one for Cal-breds and one open, are scheduled next week. The purses for those races were comparable to the $55,000-added offered in the Winners' Foundation.

Vicarino, who has won 2 of 3 starts, was coming off an 11-length victory in which he set a Fresno record of 1:07.34 for six furlongs. He worked five furlongs in 57 seconds last Saturday in his final prep for the Winners' Foundation.

Gilchrist said he will now point Vicarino to the Arizona Juvenile Stakes, a $50,000 race at 6 1/2 furlongs at Turf Paradise on Dec. 31. Lost in the Fog won the Arizona Juvenile Stakes in 2004.

* Heading Saturday's card is a $40,000 claimer at a mile. Corvallis Dee, winner of three of his past four starts, all on the dirt at Emerald Downs, and Megabyte, a runner-up in his past two northern California starts, figure to be dueling the whole way.