Bejarano Injured When Horse Collapses

Bejarano Injured When Horse Collapses
Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt
Leading jockey Rafael Bejarano was inured when his mount collapsed at Santa Anita.
Leading Santa Anita jockey Rafael Bejarano was thrown heavily to the ground in the stretch of the final race March 13 when his mount, Parisian Art, had an apparent heart attack and died. The jockey was put into an ambulance on a stretcher and taken to nearby Arcadia Methodist Hospital.

Track officials reported that he was talking and moving his arms and legs, but was in a great deal of pain in his neck and shoulders.

Parisian Art, the second choice in the seven-furlong $32,000 maiden claiming race on the main track, was leading around the turn when Bejarano began easing him out of the race. The jockey was able to avoid oncoming traffic, looking behind him to try to stay out of trouble.

Into the stretch, Bejarano almost had Parisian Art pulled up and was well back of the field when the 3-year-old collapsed just past the eighth pole, dropping to the ground and throwing Bejarano head first onto the track. The rider was thrown clear from the horse, but remained motionless while the ambulance arrived.

Atop the jockey standings with 60 wins, Bejarano had ridden two earlier winners on the card, including Steven’s Being in the feature race just before the fall. It was the 12th winning ride for Bejarano in 25 mounts since March 8. He is scheduled to ride Georgie Boy in the March 15 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II).

Parisian Art, who was making his second start, was a California-bred son of Lord Carson--Parisian Heart, by French Deputy. Dan Olson, who bred him with Brad Gerring, owned the gelding. Current Santa Anita leading trainer Doug O’Neill was the conditioner.

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