09/20/2006 11:00PM

Rider hurt in Bay Meadows training


Rider hurt in Bay Meadows training

An assistant trainer sustained a fractured neck and her mount was fatally injured in a training accident Thursday morning at Bay Meadows. The assistant, Colleen Hartford, suffered two compressed fractures in her neck, and Alitalia, the 4-year-old filly she was riding, appeared to have head and upper spinal injuries and died on the track.

The accident occurred in midstretch when a 2-year-old filly, Lady Helm, who had just completed a half-mile work, was spooked and ducked into the path of Alitalia.

Trainer Billy Morey said Lady Helm, working for the first time since a Sept. 9 claim, was sore behind.

Hartford, an assistant to trainer John Martin, was admitted to Stanford Hospital with movement in all her limbs. She will wear a spinal collar for four to six weeks.

X-rays on jockey Frank Alvarado, who was aboard Lady Helm, revealed a bruised rib. He took off his Thursday mounts.