08/10/2006 11:00PM

Two riders hurt in Penn National spill


Jockeys Thomas Clifton and Ediberto Rodriguez were hospitalized with injuries sustained when their mounts fell during Thursday night's third race at Penn National Race Course.

Clifton, 37, the track's leading rider with 96 wins, broke his nose, collarbone, and several ribs. He also underwent a non-surgical procedure to halt internal bleeding caused by a lacerated liver.

Rodriguez, 38, sustained back injuries and is expected to be placed in a partial body cast at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. He currently ranks sixth in the Penn National jockey standings with 54 victories.

The accident occurred shortly after the start of a mile-and-70-yard turf race. Clifton's mount, I Wish I Slew, came into tight quarters with another runner, Fire Mound, as the field approached the first turn. I Wish I Slew, a 7-year old gelding, fell to the ground and Rockpile, ridden by Rodriquez, was unable to avoid the fallen horse.