Jockeys Injured in Freehold Raceway Accident
Several jockeys at Freehold Raceway Park were injured Friday when a starting gate car skidded on a wet track after pulling away from the horses.
The car, pulling a trainer with two extensions, acts as a starting gate and leads the seven horses in the first moments of the race according to a video posted on NJ.com. As the car picked up speed and went into a curve Friday, it slid into a 180-degree turn with the gates still extended
One horse, ridden by Hall of Fame jockey Catello Manzi, ran into the front of the spun-out car according, to the Star-Ledger. Manzi suffered a punctured lung and several cracked ribs.
In a press release, the track's general manager, Howard Bruno, said, “Several drivers are receiving medical attention and right now our thoughts and concerns are with them." The horses were alright, the statement said.
Bruno told the Asbury Park Press track conditions were listed as "sloppy" but said, "We run 10 to 12 races a day and 1,200 over the course of a year. “We’ve had nothing like this happen before."
The accident occurred in the fifth race of the day, which was declared a "no contest." The track canceled the remaining races for the day. Live races for Saturday have been canceled due to heavy rain.
- Freehold Raceway accident: Video shows starting gate car on slippery track sliding into horses, drivers / Star-Ledger
- Pace Car Accident Interrupts Freehold Race / Freehold Patch
- Five harness drivers hurt in Freehold Raceway accident / Asbury Park Press
- Pace Car Loses Control, Skids Into Path Of Horses At Freehold Raceway/ CBS New York
CAUTION: Video may be disturbing to some