The first race of the day was run on the main track.
The first race of the day was run on the main track.

A horse suffered a heart attack and died while racing today on the Polytrack course at the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, a track official said.

The horse, 3-year-old Chattering Gambler, is the fifth horse to die at Del Mar since racing began on July 17, but the first to die on the Polytrack course.

Chatting Gambler was running in the third race today that began shortly after 3 p.m. when he collapsed near the finish line and died from an apparent heart attack, Senior Media Coordinator Dan Smith said. The jockey, Aaron Gryder, was uninjured.

Four other horses suffered fatal injuries on the turf track, prompting officials Thursday to suspended racing on the turf course. Last Thursday, a four-year-old horse named Serious suffered a broken bone in her foreleg, leading veterinarians to recommend euthanasia. The horse’s owners transported her to Orange County instead.

In addition to the five deaths, two other horses have died from training injuries, and another died of heart failure off the tracks since racing began.

Chattering Gambler is owned by the group Kynaston and Watson and trained by Ray Bell, Smith said.

City News Service contributed to this story

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