Trainer/driver Dan Daley will find out in two weeks how soon he can return to work after suffering a punctured lung, six broken ribs and a broken collarbone in an accident on June 22 at Saratoga.
by Dave Briggs
Two days after being released from hospital, trainer/driver Dan Daley was on the road Friday to Buffalo Raceway to watch his two-year-old filly trotters race in the New York Bred Excelsior Series.
“I probably pressed it a little too much… the truck ride wasn’t all that much fun,” Daley said Friday evening, eight days after suffering a punctured lung, six broken ribs and a broken collarbone in a stomach-turning accident June 22 at Saratoga Casino Hotel that also sent driver Stephane Bouchard to hospital.
“They let me out of the hospital Wednesday. They had to make sure my lung was blown up well, because I punctured my lung. That’s what they were really worried about,” Daley said. “I’m pretty sore, but my lung seems good. I go back in two weeks and get them to check it out. Then I can go on with what I’m doing. My ribs are really sore. I broke six ribs.”
Daley said Bouchard was released from hospital Tuesday after having surgery on his neck.
Bouchard told HRU late Friday night that he will provide an update on his health in Sunday’s HRU.
The accident happened in the fourth race on June 22 at Saratoga when Daley’s horse Mister Miami fell to the track.
“My colt pulled a shoe behind the gate right at the top of the stretch. He straightened up. Then in the first turn, I thought, ‘He’s a little peggy on it,’” Daley said. “I had warmed him up well and he paced the turns super. He’s a pretty nice colt. But then he was a little gimpy in the first turn and I straightened him up down the backside. About the second step into the second turn, I don’t know if he stepped on something or he had some nails in his foot or something from when he pulled the shoe, but he hit the second turn and he kind of snapped up and he hung in his hopple and he was down right then. He just went flop. There was no time to save him (from falling).
“Another horse slammed into my left side. He just kind of bounced off me. He got around me. I don’t know how, but he did. Stephane (Bouchard) got stuck there and he got launched. He was flying through the air.”
Bouchard’s horse Sporty Big Boy was euthanized after the accident. Mister Miami is recovering from injuries.
“(Mister Miami) was right down. There was nothing we could do about it. There was nowhere to go,” Daley said, adding his last accident was in 2001.
“I shattered my ankle and that took me out for awhile. But if it goes another 16 years in between, I’m good, because then I can be retired by the next one, or fall off the jog cart dead. One of the other,” Daley said, laughing.
He said he goes back to the doctor in two weeks and will find out then when he can expect to return to work.
“They’ll take more x-rays. As long as my lung is good, the ribs are going to be sore for awhile,” he said.
In the meantime, he said he will be anxious to get back in the bike.
“I’ve got 18 babies,” Daley said.
All but one of his five 2-year-old trotting fillies racing at Buffalo on Friday made breaks.
“I had a couple of breakers that probably wouldn’t have run. They’re babies and they’re used to me. They’re not used to just anybody,” Daley said.