05/31/2007 11:00PM

Injured rider upgraded


Jockey Andrew Lakeman, badly injured in a spill at Belmont Park on May 25, was upgraded from critical to guarded condition critical at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, N.Y.

"None of his injuries are life-threatening," said Terry Lynan, a spokesman for North Shore.

Still, it is unclear whether Lakeman suffered paralysis as a result of spill. Lakeman, 32, sustained severe spinal cord damage and a fractured chest as a result of the spill, in which his mount, Our Montana Dream, clipped heels with another horse approaching the stretch of a turf race. Lakeman was hurled from his mount, landing hard on his face. Jockey Norberto Arroyo Jr. was also involved in the spill and broke his collarbone.

Lakeman, who worked as an exercise rider for Allen Jerkens and rode infrequently for Jerkens and other trainers, remains in the intensive care unit of the hospital. His parents were due in from England this weekend.