20-year-old exercise rider dead after training accident at Keeneland

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Posted at 11:07 AM, Apr 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-29 18:24:12-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — A 20-year-old exercise rider died Friday morning after a training accident on the Keeneland training track.

Around 8 a.m. Friday, Callie Witt was thrown from a 2-year-old horse. Witt was an exercise rider for trainer Joe Sharp.

According to Keeneland officials, the track’s on-site medical team immediately attended to her life-threatening injuries. Lexington Fire and Emergency arrived at the scene within six minutes.

Witt was transported to the University of Kentucky Emergency Department where she was pronounced dead from blunt force injuries.

“We are heartbroken by this tragic loss,” Keeneland President and CEO Shannon Arvin said. “Our hearts and prayers go out to Callie’s family, friends and our collective racing community at this difficult time.”

Witt was a native of Nebraska, who was studying at Bluegrass Community and Technical College.


The president of BCTC released a statement following the news:

We learned this morning our student Callie Witt passed away due to a tragic accident. Today, while working for trainer Joe Sharp at Keeneland, she was thrown from a horse. Callie was an experienced rider who had been working for Sharp for over a year. She was due to graduate in August 2022.Our hearts go out to Callie’s family, and our thoughts and prayers are with them at this very sad time.