Spill to cost 'Quest' jockey Smith 4 months

September 02, 1998|By NEW YORK TIMES

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- Mike Smith, the leading rider at Saratoga Park this summer and the regular jockey on the star colt Coronado's Quest, fractured two vertebrae in his upper back in a spill he took on Monday. He will not ride for three or four months.

The 33-year-old jockey remained at Albany Medical Center yesterday. He was transferred there Monday night from Saratoga Hospital, and was resting comfortably with no neurological damage, according to his doctors. But Dr. Allen Carl, an orthopedic surgeon and specialist in spinal injuries, reported that Smith, who walked away from the spill unaided only to check himself into the hospital later, would be kept in a body cast for two months.

Smith won the $750,000 Travers Stakes aboard Coronado's Quest on Saturday. Two days later, about 200 yards after the start of an allowance race on the grass, he was flipped into the hedges during some bumping in traffic.

"One minute, you're on top of the world," he reflected, "and the next, you're flat on your back."

Pub Date: 9/02/98

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