John Velazquez

John Velazquez

Coglianese Photos

Injured Velazquez Continuing to Heal

The jockey said he may begin exercising horses in about a week at Saratoga.

Jockeys’ Guild chairman John Velazquez announced July 9 that he is continuing to heal from a spill in June at Churchill Downs and expects to begin exercising horses in about a week.

Velazquez suffered a broken collarbone and trauma to his kidney June 16 after the horse he was riding in the ninth race at Churchill broke down in the stretch. He was initially hospitalized at Norton Audubon Hospital in Louisville.

Velazquez has since been under the care of Dr. Stephen O’Brien at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York.

"I saw Dr. O’Brien (July 9), and he said I was healing very well," Velazquez said in a news release.

O’Brien cleared Velazquez to start exercising horses at Saratoga July 16.

"After that, I will just have to play it by ear," Velazquez said. "Hopefully it won’t be too much longer before I can race again, but I want to make sure I'm strong enough to compete before I get back to riding."