Jockey Hospitalized After Falling Off Horse

Alex Gonzalez, 18, Fell Off Horse During Race At Del Mar

A jockey is recovering from a mild concussion after he took a fall on the Del Mar track during a race on Wednesday.

Jockey Alex Gonzalez was riding a horse named Victory Joe when his horse got squeezed between two other horses.

"He just… clipped the heel of the horse in front of him. He just had no room... His horse was already tired," Jockey Joel Rosario told 10News. "That's why he clipped the heel. That's why he fell down."

Rosario, who is currently ranked number one at Del Mar, said events like this are to be expected when one takes part in this dangerous sport.

"It's really dangerous," said Rosario. "It's a racehorse, and you never know what's going to happen."

Gonzalez was thrown from his horse and hit the ground hard. When his head made contact with the track, Gonzalez briefly lost consciousness and lay lifeless for a few minutes. Moments later, he complained of a severe headache and was rushed to the hospital.

He was taken by ambulance to Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla where he is in good condition and receiving treatment for his injuries.

Gonzalez's agent, Vince DeGregory, said Gonzalez will be in the hospital overnight.

Rosario, like Gonzalez, got squeezed in between two horses during his first race at Del Mar in 2007, but he said he made a split-second decision that kept him from falling.

"I was just inside... [and] had one horse on the outside of me, in front of me... So I just moved over a little bit," said Rosario.

Rosario said Gonzalez, who is currently an apprentice jockey, is good, but still has a lot to learn.

Regardless, he said Gonzalez is doing well for himself, since Gonzalez has won 73 races since his debut on the track in the summer of 2009.

DeGregory said Gonzalez will become a full-fledged jockey in the footsteps of his father and grandfather.

Gonzalez is the third jockey to be injured this summer at Del Mar. His fall was the first on the poly-track this season.

Last week, Joe Talamo broke his wrist on the turf. His horse, Rock Star Ben, broke his leg and had to be put down. A third jockey, Tyler Baise, had all the bones in his face fractured after he was kicked in the face by a horse.