Jockey Patrick Valenzuela, currently fifth in the jockey standings at Hollywood Park, was diagnosed with three cracked ribs after he was kicked by his mount in the paddock prior to the fifth race at Hollywood Nov. 26.
"He's expected to be released tonight, but they're still checking to make sure there's nothing wrong internally," said Jim Pegram, the jockey's agent, on Sunday. "Normally these types of injuries are very painful, but we're lucky he didn't get hurt worse. It's a dangerous business."
Valenzuela was about to be legged up aboard Doug O' Neill trainee Gotta Getcha, a 2-year-old first time starter owned by Ran Jan Racing and Hudson, when the colt kicked him in the right side. The jockey was transported via ambulance to Centinela Hospital for X-rays and observation. He took off the remainder of the card.
According to Pegram, Valenzuela will be unable to ride for approximately three to six weeks.
"I don't know exactly what the doctors have told him, but going from my experience, he'll be off for somewhere around that amount of time," Pegram said. "If we're lucky, we'll make opening day at Santa Anita."
Gotta Getcha ran fourth and was claimed for $32,000 by Barber and La Cresta Farms. He will be trained by John Sadler.