From City News Service:
ARCADIA — A 90-year-old paddock guard at a Southern California thoroughbred track put himself between a young girl and a horse that broke loose before a race, injuring himself and leaving the girl unharmed.
Officials from Santa Anita said in statement that a 3-year-old gelding named See and Sage broke free from his handler in the track’s walking ring and ran toward an opening guarded by John Shear.
The horse ran into Shear, who dropped his rope and threw himself in front of the girl, who is about three. The statement says Shear was conscious and responsive when take to the hospital. His exact injuries were unclear.
Former jockey Shear has been a fixture for decades at Santa Anita’s walking ring, where horses are paraded in front of the public before races.