Vince Bracciale, Bowie's leading jockey with 19 wins, was released by University Hospital in Baltimore yesterday after suffering several broken ribs and a bruised spleen in a spill during Thursday's seventh race. He is expected to be grounded from four to six weeks.
Bracciale was astride Supporting Actor when that horse was battling for the lead and broke its left foreleg, throwing the 27-year-old jockey into the railing. Supporting Actor was humanely destroyed on the track.
Bracciale, was rushed by helicopter to the shock trauma unit of University Hospital. He was released after doctors determined he had not sustained spinal injuries.
Thursday's mishap was not the first for Supporting Actor. During Bowie's summer meeting, the lightly raced son of Droll Role stumbled at the start of a race, spilling jockey Bryan Fann, who also broke several ribs.
Off-track betting, long considered by insiders to be the ultimate salvation of the declining racing industry, may be introduced in the current session of the Maryland legislature by Del. Louis P. Morseberger (D-Balt.).
Morseberger, who has a background of racing, has been studying the off-track betting systems in New York and Connecticut and is keeping tabs on the possible adoption of the off-track proposals under consideration in Florida.
John Lawmann, a mutuels employe at the Maryland tracks, has been working with the Baltimore county delegate since June on the matter. He said yesterday, "Louis has been studying the information I and others on his staff have been bringing him since the middle of last year. Should the mood of the legislature be right and the figures say that revenue can be raised by the introduction of the system, then he'll introduce his bill."
The $40,000 Tosmah Handicap, originally scheduled at Bowie for Sunday, Jan. 27, will be run one day earlier, on Saturday, Jan. 26, along with the $40,000-added Virginia Belle Stakes. Both events are at six furlongs for 3-year-old fillies.