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Best Pal won't race in Belmont Stakes

Best Pal will pass on a chance to win the Belmont Stakes and a $1-million Triple Crown bonus. The Kentucky Derby runner-up and the fifth-place finisher in the Preakness, will not run in Saturday's Belmont Stakes, trainer Ian Jory said Monday. "We're not coming," Jory said from his Hollywood Park barn. "He just doesn't seem as bright mentally as he has been. I think he's just plain exhausted and it would be too much to ship him back." A victory in the Belmont would have given Best Pal 15 points in the Triple Crown bonus, which pays $1-million to the horse accumulating the most points in all three races. Derby winner Strike the Gold and Preakness winner Hansel each have 10 points heading into Saturday's 1{-mile race. Mane Minister, the third-place finisher in both the Derby and Preakness, could win the $1-million bonus with a second-place finish Saturday _ provided Strike the Gold and Hansel don't finish higher than fifth. If Mane Minister wins the Belmont, the bonus is his.Golf: Pro golfer Heather Farr is scheduled for surgery Friday at Denver General Hospital to remove a tumor from her skull, doctors said. The tumor has survived radical chemotherapy, radiation and a bone-marrow transplant. Farr, who was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago at 24, has endured a mastectomy and chemotherapy that failed to stop cancer from recurring. Extensive surgery was performed to remove cancer from around her spine before she could undergo the bone-marrow transplant. Despite the extensive treatment, her skull tumor has "significantly enlarged" since last fall, doctors said. The only option left is to take it out. "We're hoping all we find is dead tumor," said Dr. Kevin Lillehei, assistant professor of neurosurgery at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. "At this point, we're a little guarded."

Track: Dr. Jamie Astaphan _ who prescribed steroids for sprinter Ben Johnson and other athletes because he feared they "would kill themselves" if they continued to administer their own treatments _ was suspended Monday from practicing medicine for 18 months and fined $5,000. Astaphan appeared angry but said nothing as a panel of four doctors from Ontario's College of Physicians and Surgeons delivered the penalty for professional misconduct. An agreed statement of facts outlined how the doctor prescribed steroids, obtained black-market steroids, lied about Johnson's steroid use after the athlete tested positive at the 1988 Seoul Olympics and falsified his patients' medical records to omit references to steroids.

McCloud's father dies: The father of Indiana Pacers player and former Florida State standout George McCloud died of an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reported Monday. The Rev. George McCloud Jr., 60, of Ormond Beach, was pronounced dead Sunday at Ormond Memorial Hospital after apparently shooting himself in the abdomen in the bedroom of the family home, said Lt. Kevin McCue of the Ormond Beach Police Department. The results of a planned autopsy weren't available Monday night, but police said there was no indication of foul play. "There's no indication at this point that it's anything but a suicide," said McCue. The elder McCloud's wife, Verbena, a disc jockey and television host, died of a heart attack on Valentine's Day this year.

Southwest Conference: Southwest Conference presidents voted Monday against expansion, but left open the possibility of eventually adding Tulane to the 77-year-old league. The SWC had been looking at the Green Wave as a possible ninth member to replace Arkansas. "The Southwest Conference has decided that it will not pursue the addition of any institutions to the conference at this time," said A. Kenneth Pye, president of Southern Methodist University and new chairman of the SWC presidents council. He said the conference will continue to pursue "creative scheduling arrangements with the Big Eight, Big East or with other universities."

Et cetera: Frank "Muddy" Waters, Michigan State's football coach from 1980 to 1982, was in serious condition Monday after having a mild heart attack in Okemos, Mich. Major Harris, a former standout quarterback at West Virginia who was a reserve as a pro, was released last week by the British Columbia Lions, according to coach Bob O'Billovich. Olympic champions Willie Davenport, Phil Mahre and Dorothy Hamill were among 34 gold medalists nominated for the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame will induct two members from track and field or aquatics events who competed in the Olympics since 1948; two from all other Olympic summer sports since 1948, and one from any Winter Olympics.

_ Compiled by Mike Kern.

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