Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens was seated on a bench at Del Mar near the stable area racing office the morning of Aug. 15. Attired in a T-shirt and shorts, the right knee that he had surgically replaced exactly three weeks ago was on display for all to see.
"I'm no different than anyone else. They said the first two weeks [after surgery] would be hell, and they were," Stevens said. "But I've gotten rid of my cane, I'm walking and driving again, and that's the main thing."
Stevens, 51, has expressed intentions to ride again following rehabilitation, which would be an achievement believed to be without precedent in racing.
The winner of 4,988 North American races, Stevens ranks ninth all-time on the earnings list with $236,951,490. He resumed his career in January 2013 after initially retiring in 2005 due in major part to his problematic knee.
Included in his comeback victories were the Breeders' Cup Classic with Mucho Macho Man, Breeders' Cup Distaff aboard Beholder, and the Preakness Stakes with Oxbow.