Updated on 09/15/2011 1:20PM

Exogenous retired after accident


ELMONT, N.Y. - Exogenous, who would have been one of the top choices in Saturday's Breeders' Cup Distaff at Belmont Park, apparently suffered a fractured skull, but was reported to be in satisfactory condition in her stall Saturday afternoon, after a frightening incident that caused her to be scratched.

Just as Exogenous was about to leave the tunnel from the paddock and step onto the track for the post parade, she reared backward, fell over, and landed heavily on her head. In addition, her right hind leg became stuck between slats of a metal fence that abuts the pathway leading to the track.

The scene was awful. The filly, dazed, tried to get up, but was kept still while her leg was dislodged. She then tried to rise again, but a decision was made to sedate her and remove her from the track in a horse ambulance. Randy Schulhofer, the assistant to his father, Scotty Schulhofer, the trainer of Exogenous, stood by distraught while the filly struggled. Exogenous, who was still prone while loaded into the van, was taken to her stall at Schulhofer's barn.

According to Dr. C. Wayne McIlwraith of the American Association of Equine Practitioners, who was employed by the Breeders' Cup as an on-call veterinarian, Exogenous suffered an injury to the base of her skull, but her leg was not injured.

"She could deteriorate, but that's unlikely," McIlwraith said. "She probably could have gotten up if we had waited another 10 minutes, but we needed to get her out of there." In addition to receiving a sedative, McIlwraith said Exogenous was given a corticosteroid to help reduce swelling to the skull. McIlwraith said blood was coming out of her ears.

Although she was doing well late Saturday afternoon, Exogenous is not out of the woods. Scotty Schulhofer said it was likely she had a fractured skull. "I hope we can save her," said Schulhofer, who said Exogenous would not race again. If she survives, she will be a broodmare, he said.

Jockey Javier Castellano, who was on Exogenous, was not injured when the filly fell.