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Jun 24, 2011

Jockey makes return from injury at Arlington Park


Arlington Heights, IL (Sports Network) - Jockey Brandon Meier made his return to the races Wednesday at Arlington Park after being sidelined for four months. Meier had a mount in Arlington's first race of the day.

"I'm glad to be back this soon," said Meier Wednesday morning. "It's been a long road back, but going through all that physical therapy was worth it."

Meier, son of jockey Randall Meier, was seriously injured in a spill at Hawthorne Race Course on February 18.

"I don't remember the fall at all," said Meier. "I came to in the hospital. I was in intensive care for three days, and during that time I had two seizures. I messed up the C-2, C-3 and C-4 vertebrae in my neck as well as my shoulder. I had surgery on my shoulder, but the therapist healed my neck by placing her fingers in between in each vertebra every day and bending everything back into place."

In Wednesday's opening race, Meier guided Ripe Tomato to a fifth-place finish. Trained by Roger Brueggermann, the eight-year-old mare raced fifth the entire seven-furlongs on Arlington's synthetic main track. It was the only scheduled mount of the day for Meier.

Now in his fourth full year riding, Meier has won 219 races in 1,902 mounts for more than $4 million.

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