Javier Castellano was at Long Island's North Shore Hospital Wednesday night after hitting the track hard in a gruesome spill in the eighth race at Aqueduct. The track's leading rider complained of neck and shoulder pain. In the first quarter mile of the entry-level allowance feature, Castellano's mount, River Salt, fell suddenly after shattering both sesamoids in her right front leg. Castellano hit the ground hard and stayed there until being loaded into the ambulance on a stretcher. Fortunately for the 25-year old rider, replays appeareds to confirm that he was not kicked. Castellano was taken briefly to first aid, then to North Shore for what were being termed as precautionary X-rays. River Salt met an unfortunate ending, running nearly a furlong in the injured leg. She was euthanized on the scene. It was the 16th career start for River Salt. She won twice with three second and three thirds, earning $61,308 for a variety of owners and trainers.
Castellano won the race immediately preceding the spill, giving him a meet-high 55 victories. Richard Migliore is his closest pursuer with 43 wins. The meet ends on Sunday, March 9.