03/18/2016 1:36PM

Rosario, Hernandez recovering from injuries


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Joel Rosario, who fractured his wrist in a spill during the stretch run of the Melody of Colors Stakes here on Feb. 20, is expected to return to the saddle April 1, his agent, Ron Anderson, said Friday. Anderson said he’s got mounts lined up for Rosario on Florida Derby Day, April 2.

“He’ll see the doctor on Tuesday, and I’m reasonably sure he’ll be ready to ride on the first,” said Anderson. “He’ll ride here over the Florida Derby weekend, Friday through Sunday, and possibly on Wednesday and Thursday the following week, depending on how the condition book looks. He should be on about four or five horses on Florida Derby Day, and we’ve already got calls lined up for the opening weekend at Keeneland.”

Meanwhile, jockey Rafael Hernandez, who was the more seriously injured of the two riders in the Melody of Colors mishap, visited the track for the first time since the accident Thursday.

Hernandez suffered a fractured clavicle, several broken ribs, and underwent surgery to remove a kidney as a result of the incident.

“He came to fill out some insurance forms and also pick up his clothes and truck, which have been here since the race,” said his agent, Cliff Collier.

“He’s doing as well as expected, and he does plan to ride again. He’s got 10 screws in his clavicle, the ribs are healing, but his stomach still bothers him a little from the kidney surgery. The doctors said he won’t be able to get on horses until June, but he is really excited about the fact he will be back to ride again.”

Hernandez had won 27 race at the time of his accident and still remains 10th in the jockey standings.

In Hernandez’s absence, Collier has taken over the engagements of Elvis Trujillo, whom he’s handled in the past, and apprentice rider Carlos Hernandez, who is no relation to Rafael.