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Around & About / News and notes

Ciminelli is TV star

Left-hander Ryan Ciminelli of Cheektowaga finds himself in the spoiler's role for today's final round of the PBA Tournament of Champions (ESPN 1 p.m.) at Red Rock Lanes in Las Vegas, Nev.

Australia's Jason Belmonte and Mike Fagan of Dallas are the leading contenders for Player of the Year honors and PBA Tournament of Champions and top qualifier Sean Rash of Montgomery, Ill., is the dark horse candidate.

Ciminelli qualified fourth for the four-bowler stepladder final. He will face Fagan in the first match. The winner will meet Belmonte while Rash waits it out at the top of the ladder.

Ciminelli posted a 10-8 record in match play Friday and finished with 8,676 pins, including bonus points. He was only 2-6 in the final round of match play before he ended it with a 236-176 triumph over Rhino Page in the position match.

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Dullahan, Bodemeister win Derby preps

Dullahan ran down Hansen in the final furlong to insert his own name among the Kentucky Derby favorites in the $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes on Saturday at Keeneland in Lexington, Ky.

Dullahan went off at 3-1 odds, running the 1 1/8 mile on the Polytrack in 1.47.94 under Kent Desormeaux to beat the near white colt that was the center of attention before the race for the wrong reasons when his tail was partially dyed blue on Saturday and later washed out.

Elsewhere in horse racing, Bodemeister pulled away for a convincing 9 1/2 -length victory in the Grade 1 $1 million Arkansas Derby in Hot Springs, Ark., before a crowd of 63,804 at a warm and windy Oaklawn Park.

In Aintree, England, the Grand National steeplechase was marred for the second year in a row with the death of two horses, including Synchronised. The pre-race favorite went down at the sixth fence of the 4 1/2 -mile, 30-fence race considered one of the world's most prestigious jumping races.

From News Staff and wire service reports