11/05/2001 1:00AM

Van Berg facing suspension

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ARCADIA, Calif. - Hall of Fame trainer Jack Van Berg has been suspended by the Santa Anita stewards, effective Nov. 16, for failing "to satisfy an outstanding financial agreement."

According to Ingrid Fermin, who issued the ruling with fellow stewards Pete Pedersen and Tom Ward, Van Berg was ordered at a hearing earlier this year during the Del Mar meeting to make a series of payments to a veterinarian. The suspension was announced on Monday after Van Berg failed to meet the schedule of payments, the stewards said.

Van Berg said on Monday that he had not yet been notified of the suspension but that he intended to make the payments to avoid a suspension.

"I have to, that's all," Van Berg said.

The ruling gives Van Berg more than a week to complete his obligations before it takes effect.

"The reason it is delayed is we want to give him every opportunity to straighten things out and make arrangements for his horses," Fermin said. "He has a large operation."

Van Berg, who trained 1988 Horse of the Year Alysheba, has a stable of mostly claiming horses based at Hollywood Park.