DEL MAR, Calif. — Hall of Fame jockey Victor Espinoza is wearing a neck brace while recovering at his San Diego home after fracturing a vertebra during a training accident at Del Mar.
Agent Brian Beach says on Twitter that the 46-year-old rider spent 11 days in the hospital and at a rehabilitation facility.
Espinoza says he initially thought he might be paralyzed after the July 22 fall at the track north of San Diego. He told ABC affiliate KGTV in San Diego that his body was numb and he could only move his right arm.
The jockey says the first time he cried was when he first started moving his right leg and by the time he got to the hospital he started moving his other leg.
Espinoza says his left arm is still numb. He will be in the neck brace for six weeks and hopes to make a full recovery.
He was exercising Bobby Abu Dhabi during morning workouts when the horse had an apparent heart attack and threw Espinoza off. Bobby Abu Dhabi died.
Espinoza rode American Pharoah to a sweep of the Triple Crown in 2015.
ARCADIA, Calif. — Jockey Rafael Bejarano rode his 4,000th career winner at Santa Anita.
He guided filly Portal Creek to a 3 }-length victory in the third race Saturday for trainer Bob Hess Jr.
The 36-year-old Peruvian jockey says Santa Anita has always been a special place for him. He won six races at the Southern California track in his first day riding there on April 8, 2006.
Bejarano came to the U.S. in 2002 after training at a national riding academy in Peru. He led the U.S. in victories with 455 in 2004.
He has career purse earnings of $200,611,833 and five victories in the Breeders’ Cup.
OCEANPORT, N.J. — Maximum Security will race this weekend for the first time since being disqualified in the Kentucky Derby.
The Jason Servis-trained colt was among six 3-year-olds entered Thursday for the $150,000 Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park on Sunday.
The 1 1/16-mile race in New Jersey will be the first in more than two months for Maximum Security. The colt galloped 1 1/8 miles here Wednesday.
In the Derby on May 2, Maximum Security got to the finish line 1}-lengths ahead of Country House. The victory was overturned 22 minutes later when the stewards disqualified the 9-2 second choice because of interference with eventual Preakness winner War of Will and other horses.
It marked the first time in the 145-year history of the Derby that the first-place finisher was disqualified for interference.