03/13/2008 11:00PM

Bejarano taken to hospital after spill


ARCADIA, Calif. – Rafael Bejarano, the leading rider at Santa Anita, was taken by ambulance to Arcadia Methodist Hospital on Thursday after he was injured in a one-horse spill in the eighth and final race.

Bejarano was thrown hard to the ground when his mount Parisian Art collapsed at the eighth pole and died of an apparent heart attack. Parisian Art was trailing the field and being eased when he went down; Bejarano landed head first. According to Santa Anita president Ron Charles, who was on the track soon after the accident, Bejarano was talking and moving his arms and legs.

Charles told the Santa Anita publicity department that Bejarano had pain in his neck and shoulders. He did not stand or sit up, and was removed from the track by stretcher.

Bejarano has won 60 races during the winter meet, and is scheduled to ride Georgie Boy on Saturday in the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes.