07/18/2014 8:17PM

Stevens's knee injury worse than initially thought

Barbara D. Livingston
Gary Stevens' knee injury is more severe than originally thought. The 51-year-old jockey will undergo a full knee replacement next week.

Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens said Friday he will need to undergo a full knee replacement next week after doctors informed him that the damage to his right knee is more severe than first believed, including a completely torn anterior cruciate ligament.

Stevens, 51, made his comments on HRTV, the horse-racing network where on July 10 he first announced that he would stop riding immediately and undergo knee surgery.

“It’s been a great run, a great career, and if I don’t make it back, I can live with that,” Stevens said while being interviewed by Laffit Pincay III and Christina Blacker.

“My ACL was completely shot, which I didn’t even know. That was a big shock,” Stevens said. He said “there were some tears” when his doctor called with the news Friday.

“He said he’s never seen anybody do what [I’ve] been doing with no ACL,” Stevens said. “So, I apologize to anyone who happens to have lost money on me. I’ve been doing the best I could do for a while. It hasn’t been right for the last month and a half.”

Stevens said he was “looking forward to getting back in the saddle at some point or continuing on with my broadcasting career.”

Stevens was forced to quit riding twice previously, both times largely because of knee issues. He returned to riding this most-recent time in January 2013 and had great success over the past 18 months, including victories last year in the Preakness Stakes, Breeders’ Cup Classic, and Breeders’ Cup Distaff.

Stevens has won more than 5,000 races in his career, including 4,988 in North America. He has spent portions of his career in France and Hong Kong and has won major international races such as the Dubai World Cup and the Japan Cup.

This year, Stevens has won 31 races from 145 mounts.

Stevens, a three-time winner of the Kentucky Derby, was voted into the Hall of Fame in 1997. He won the Eclipse Award as champion jockey of 1998.

His broadcasting career has included work with HRTV and NBC.

Mark Howell More than 1 year ago
who cares I you have a torn acl when u are going to perform a total knee replacement wat a stpid comment
dave o More than 1 year ago
Jeff Wilson More than 1 year ago
He loved to move his horses way too soon and then be empty in the lane. That is why we gave him the nickname "Weak Knees".
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
you are an idiot
dave o More than 1 year ago
ken n More than 1 year ago
Best buzzer man in the business.
Ray Sousa More than 1 year ago
no doubt a great jock....not perfect in all areas but overall conducted himself better than most.
grayposse More than 1 year ago
Great to see RayC is so happy Gary apologized for that ride in the 6 path when he was bet down to 4/5. If alot of these jocks rode the way they do here in Hong Kong, they wouldn't be jockeys for long.
RayC More than 1 year ago
Your A Great person and the fact your saying your sorry if someone lost money on you is just great.I think when a joc is hurt weather its minor or not the public should know..Its criminal I think to keep rideing and if a joc cant rate a horse your done in alot of cases .
Greg More than 1 year ago
DRF daily favorite picks, pay for it losers
Greg More than 1 year ago
Go shove it DRF+. All u poor losers paying for that garbage. Good for u.
mike More than 1 year ago
Don't put everyone into the mix on that,I'm not paying.
mike More than 1 year ago
Are you actually arrogant enough to suggest You're THE ONLY ONE not paying? That's rich!
Jeff Wilson More than 1 year ago
DRF+ is a total joke, DRF will be out of business in 18 months.
Michael More than 1 year ago
I had the honor of watching Gary at Longacres. It was a amazing watching him ride when he was young. Thanks Old man