03/11/2015 9:14AM

Hall of Fame jockey Turcotte breaks legs in accident

Barbara D. Livingston
Hall of Fame jockey Ron Turcotte

Ron Turcotte, the Hall of Fame jockey who rode Secretariat to the 1973 Triple Crown, sustained fractures in both of his legs during an accident in Canada on Monday and has been hospitalized, according to a spokesman for the former rider.

Turcotte, who has been paralyzed from the waist down since a riding accident in 1978, was admitted to a hospital in Perth-Andover after a vehicle Turcotte was driving hit “an icy patch” and flipped onto its side near the rider’s home in New Brunswick. A family friend was in the vehicle on the passenger side and “suffered minor injuries,” according to the statement provided by Leonard Lusky.

Lusky said in the statement that Turcotte is in good spirits and that he asked his physicians to set his fractures with one white cast and one blue cast, the colors of Secretariat’s silks.

Turcotte, 73, has remained popular since his forced retirement and frequently appears at racetracks for signing events. The statement said his upcoming appearances have been canceled.

“The family appreciates the well wishes and concern of fans and the Thoroughbred racing community but asks for privacy at this time,” the statement read.