Velazquez continues his recovery, thanks all who have expressed concern
By Jockeys' Guild | 11/19/2013 11:40 AM ET
Jockey John Velazquez, Chairman of the Jockeys' Guild, continues to recover at his home in Long Island, New York. Velazquez was injured on November 2 at Santa Anita Racetrack when his mount, Secret Compass, broke down during the running of the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies.
"Thankfully, the paramedics were there to work on me right away and made the decision to go to a trauma hospital. That helped saved my life," said Velazquez.
After the accident, Velazquez was taken to Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena. Upon arrival, the trauma team set to work on Velazquez. It was quickly determined he had severe internal injuries and within minutes was taken in for emergency surgery. Surgeons removed Velazquez' spleen and repaired a damaged pancreas.
"I would like to thank Dr. Brian Lugo and Dr. Jonathan Phillips," said Velazquez. "The doctors, my nurses in ICU, and entire staff were excellent. They took really good care of me."
Velazquez spent five days in the hospital and another five days in California before returning home to New York.
"So many people helped Leona and me while we were in California," Velazquez said. "We'd like to thank Craig Fravel and the Breeders' Cup for their help when Leona and I needed to stay longer. Mr. Scott Ford (who owned Secret Compass) was responsible in getting my children and us home to New York and we are very thankful for his help."
"We'd also like to thank Bob and Jill Baffert for their help and kindness," added Velazquez.
According to doctors in New York, Velazquez' recovery is progressing nicely and will follow up with another appointment next month.
"I really wanted to thank everyone for their prayers and well wishes," said Velazquez. "I really appreciate it. I'm doing well and looking forward to a full recovery."