Thursday, September 17, 2009


Arcadia, CA, Sept. 17 -- Seriously-injured jockey Rene Douglas talks candidly about his life-changing accident on the next edition of HRTV's (TM) newsmagazine show, "Inside Information," which will air on Sunday, Sept. 20 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.

Also featured on the show will be an entertaining retrospective on stretch-running equine legend, Silky Sullivan, as well as Hall of Fame trainer Jonathan Sheppard.

A native of Panama, Douglas has enjoyed an outstanding career, winning more than 3,000 races. But, on May 23 at Arlington Park, the site for many of his greatest triumphs, including six riding titles, he was involved in a horrifying spill that has left him paralyzed in his lower extremities.

In the piece, a number of Douglas's riding colleagues -- Eddie Razo, Jesse Campbell, Tim Thornton, E.T. Baird, and others -- openly discuss the impact Douglas's accident has had on each.

"For all the years I've been in Chicago, and all the success I've had," Douglas said. "One day can change everything."

"It's changed a lot of people's lives," offered Campbell. "But one thing I'm sure that it changed a lot of people's lives for the better."

Few things captivate a racing fan more than a late-running horse gobbling up ground in the stretch. Over the years, the likes of Concern, Megahertz, and Vigors, were noted for their breath-taking rallies. Inevitably, many staunch closers are compared to the legendary, and very popular, Silky Sulllivan, who captured imaginations in the late 1950's. Often completely outrun in the early stages of a race, Silky Sullivan's electrifying late-runs made him a very popular Thoroughbred on the West Coast.

"It was electric," said Dan Smith, Del Mar's senior media coordinator. "And once word got out what type of horse he was, he was worth a lot of people at the (admission) gate."

Hall of Famer Jonathan Sheppard has crafted his reputation as one of the sport's greatest steeplechase trainers. In his 40-year career, Sheppard has been steeplechase racing's all-time money-winner, while leading in the standings for 18 consecutive years. While it's a well-founded reputation, Sheppard's success as a flat racer is sometimes overlooked.

He has also conditioned a number of top flat performers such as With Anticipation, Just As Well, Informed Decision, and 2008 Breeders' Cup champ, Forever Together.

"What's the difference between training a flat racer and a jumper?" Sheppard asked, rhetorically. "Basically nothing. All you're trying to do is keep them healthy, happy, and sound."

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