The incident happened as the 5-year-old horse and exercise rider Carlos Correa were going about their normal morning gallop. Little Nick, a 7-year-old gelding trained by Anthony Quartarolo, bolted and collided with Jackson Bend.
"Another horse came on at the gap and ran right into him," said Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito, who added that Correa was uninjured in the collision. "I didn't see it. Thank God I didn't see it.
"He was laying on the track for close to five minutes; he was just in shock. He went back to the barn in the ambulance, and we started giving him fluids right away. All the vital signs were fine. It's a miracle."
Jackson Bend, owned by Robert LaPenta and Fred Brei, has been pointing to a title defense of the $500,000 Forego (gr. I) Sept. 1. But those plans may have to be altered.
"Let's see what happens the next couple of days," Zito said. "The main thing is we need to get him back to normal. He is an amazing, amazing, amazing horse, and this proves how amazing he is."
After being taken back to the barn, Jackson Bend, a son of Hear No Evil with earnings of more than $1.6 million, was examined by Dr. Joe Migliacci.
"When I got to the barn, Jackson Bend was standing in the ambulance, and we backed him out slowly," Migliacci said. "There were no signs of lameness, but he was very quiet. That was alarming as he is usually a very active, aggressive horse.
"On examination, I couldn't tell which side he was hit on, which is a good sign. He was hit on the right side. He then walked the shedrow, and while he did it slowly, he was walking fine. I found no fractured ribs or damage to his shoulder area, but his heart rate was up. I think he got the air knocked out of him. My main concern was that he might have a lung contusion or trauma to his lungs from the blow, but we wouldn't be able to find that out for a while.
"I went back to the barn shortly after the initial examination, and he was hollering for food and acting normal. He took eight liters of fluids that have electrolytes, which is the same way you would treat a person in shock. Within 15 minutes of delivering the fluid his eyes got brighter, his heart rate came down, and he seemed to do fine. Listening to him, he sounded nice and clear. I think he's a tough guy.
"My general opinion is that he is going to do well. We will continue to monitor him for the next number of days," Migliacci said.
Quaratarolo said his horse appeared to be fine as well.
"He walked onto the track, was spooked by something, and bolted," Quartarolo said. "He grazed Jackson Bend, and fortunately the rider was able to stay on board and Little Nick is fine. He did not sustain any injuries."
Jackson Bend was bred in Florida by Brei's Jacks or Better Farm. He is out of the Tabasco Cat mare Sexy Stockings. This year he won the Carter Handicap (gr. I) and the Hal's Hope Stakes (gr. III). In 2011 he finished third in the Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) to conclude the season after winning the James Marvin and Forego and running second in the Kelso Handicap (gr. II). His career record stands at 9-6-4 from 27 starts.