02/03/2006 12:00AM

Evangeline rider dies in car crash

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Jockey James Weatherly, a regular on the Louisiana circuit in recent years, died Thursday morning following an automobile accident near Lafayette, La. He was 27.

Weatherly was currently riding at the Evangeline Downs winter meeting and had won with two of his 39 mounts. For his career, Weatherly won 498 races from 6,596 mounts with earnings of more than $4.3 million. He is survived by his wife, Josie, and children Catherine, Bailey, and Blaze. Funeral arrangements are pending.