07/05/2017 5:27PM

Pimentel out until fall with fractured vertebra

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Debra A. Roma
Jockey Julian Pimental fractured the T-12 vertebra in his back and also tore the meniscus in his left knee and fractured his knee cap in a training accident at Laurel Park.

Jockey Julian Pimentel was badly injured in a Saturday training accident at Laurel Park and will be sidelined until fall.

Pimentel, 36, was exercising a horse who fell and then landed on top of him, according to his agent, Ronny Gerardo. Pimentel has a fractured T-12 vertebra in his back and also tore the meniscus in his left knee and fractured his knee cap. Pimentel is currently fitted with a back brace and a knee brace.

Gerardo said Pimentel was unconscious after the accident.

“He can barely move,” Gerardo said. “The brace on his knee goes from his thigh all the way down, so he cannot move the knee, and the brace on his back is around his lower waist so he cannot bend over.

“The doctor in the hospital said as long as he doesn't move and stays straight with the brace on his back, the vertebra should heal. In another six weeks, they're going to do an MRI, and if it's not healing right then, they have to do surgery.”

Pimentel has won 1,539 races since he began riding in 2000. He is 44 for 215 this year, a 20 percent win average.

The horse Pimentel was riding, reportedly was not injured.