Velazquez taken to hospital after he, Theriot take spill

Eclipse Award-winning jockey John Velazquez was injured during a spill Friday in the seventh race on opening day at Keeneland when his mount fell over another horse that had clipped heels.

Jamie Theriot, who was aboard Whacka Whacka, clipped heels with Rapid Mon at the top of the stretch after Rapid Mon appeared to veer into his path. Velazquez's mount, Tap Dancing, then tumbled over Whacka Whacka, unseating Velazquez, who landed in the path of on-coming horses.

Both riders lay motionless for several minutes. Theriot was up and able to walk before both jockeys were taken off by ambulance. Theriot went to the track's first-aid room and walked out shortly after. Velazquez was taken to University of Kentucky Hospital.

"He was moving his extremities," said Dr. Barry Schumer, Keeneland's medical director. "He was sent to UK Trauma Unit for further evaluation and treatment."

Theriot said Velazquez was alert and moving before leaving the track.

Neither horse involved in the spill was seriously injured.

Alicia Wincze