Korean racing was in shock and mourning this evening with news from Busan that popular lady jockey Park Jin Hee had been found dead in her apartment on Friday.
According to the Sports Chosun, Park did not appear for the first of her scheduled rides at Busan’s Friday meeting and didn’t respond to calls. Officials raised the alert and police discovered her hanged at her home late on Friday afternoon.
Park Jin Hee, who was 28 in February, turned professional in 2002 at the Seoul Racecourse. She relocated to Gyeongnam Province when the Busan Racecourse opened in 2005. Over her career, she scored 38 winners from 651 rides. She was the top female rider on the Korean peninsula in 2008 and represented Korea in the Invitational Lady Jockey Challenge at Busan in 2009.
It is the second such tragedy at Busan following newly licensed jockey Lee Myoung Hwa’s decision to take her own life in 2005. Lee had been battling stress and depression.
Today’s big race at Busan was won by Beukgeukseong – a horse on whom Park won five times.