Fenwick knocked out in spill Jockey is stable, feels 'pretty lucky'

June 14, 1993|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,Staff Writer

Rider Charles Fenwick III apparently escaped serious injury yesterday after his mount, Little Red Badge, took a spectacular spill during a steeplechase race at Laurel.

Fenwick was thrown from the horse, who failed to negotiate the 13th fence just as the field had completed the final turn during the 2 1/4 -mile event.

Little Red Badge flipped over and nearly fell atop Fenwick but only caught him in the helmet with his legs.

Fenwick, who recently retired from flat racing in Maryland, was taken by helicopter to Prince George's Hospital Shock Trauma Center where he was listed as "alert and in stable condition." He was being held overnight for observation.

When he was air-lifted from the track as a precautionary measure, he was moving all his limbs and talking coherently.

Later, Fenwick said from his hospital room that "I cut my tongue and they put some stitches in there and I was knocked out pretty good. The first thing I remember was being in the helicopter. But, I guess I was pretty lucky."

The horse remained lying on the turf course for nearly a half-hour, suffering from heat prostration, before being taken away in a van and humanely destroyed.

Fenwick already had been involved in an incident in the opening race when he (aboard Karetto) dueled Paulrus and rider Jeff Teter through the lane.

Paulrus finished first by 1 3/4 lengths, but was disqualified for bumping Fenwick's horse and placed second.

"That was good, getting put up [to first] there," said Fenwick, who had decided to ride only in jumping races "as a hobby."

Fenwick retired two months ago at age 19 to return to Gilman School. He was scheduled to take a test today for his diploma, but it will have to be postponed. He will start summer school June 23.

He started riding at the Maryland tracks in the fall of 1990 and was the seventh leading jockey last year.

During his career, Fenwick won approximately 300 races and $3.5 million in purse money.

Strong run

Competing against stakes winners did not deter Lily of the North in the $35,000 Flirtation Stakes.

Under jockey Walter Guerra, the Christiana Stables' filly came roaring through the final of seven furlongs to defeat a tough field by 1 1/2 lengths for her fourth victory in seven career outings.

In the process, she defeated the pace-setting Cormorant's Flight, who tired and finished last in a six-horse field.

Lily of the North is undefeated in two starts this year. She teamed with the late-running Winka (19-1) for a $164.80 exacta payoff, largest on the 12-race card.

NOTES: Post times of subsequent races were delayed by the accident involving Fenwick, a number of late scratches and two disqualifications. The card finished almost a half-hour behind schedule. . . . New Zealand-bred Roger Jon set a Laurel track record, finishing 5 1/2 furlongs on the turf in 1:03 1/5. The previous record -- set by Dr. Manet -- had stood nearly nine years. . . . Maryland-based Logroller finished third to favored Halisee in the Grade III, $75,000 Hill Prince Stakes at Belmont Park.

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