(Santa Anita press release)
Rafael Bejarano, currently Santa Anita’s leading rider with 60 wins, was injured in a spill during the eighth race March 13 at Santa Anita. Bejarano, who was aboard a 3-year-old maiden named Parisian Art, was unseated when his mount sustained an apparent fatal heart attack inside the eighth pole.
At the time of the spill, Bejarano had eased Parisan Art to the back of the 12-horse field when the gelding dropped suddenly to the ground. Bejarano was thrown head-first to the surface and was in obvious pain.
“He was conscious, talking and moving his arms and legs,” said Santa Anita president Ron Charles, who was one of the first on the scene following the mishap.
Bejarano was taken for examination by ambulance to Arcadia Methodist Hospital, across the street from Santa Anita.
Parisian Art was making his second career start for trainer Doug O’Neill. A California-bred, Parisian Art debuted on Feb. 9 for maiden $32,000 claiming, which was the level he competed at again today.