Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 1 September 2015

Paralysed jockey JT McNamara was 'on brink of retiring'

Published 03/04/2013

JT McNamara
JT McNamara
JT McNamara was injured at Cheltenham Festival
JT McNamara suffered a serious injury at Cheltenham
Jockey JT McNamara on Galaxy Rock before the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Steeple Chase
An air ambulance believed to be carrying jockey JT McNamara flies over the Cheltenham course during the Cheltenham Festival

JT McNamara, the jockey paralysed after a fall at Cheltenham, was on the brink of retiring from horseracing.

Barry Potts, a trainer from Co Down, who was best man at the rider's wedding, revealed JT was considering giving up racing after this month's meet at Punchestown.

The amateur jockey fractured two vertebrae when his horse fell in a race at last month's Cheltenham festival.

He remains in hospital but has been told he is paralysed from the neck down.

"Hopefully, that's just the worst case scenario that they've given him," Mr Potts said.

"Fingers crossed, he'll get something moving.

"He's pretty strong-minded, he'll be determined," Mr Potts told BBC radio, Northern Ireland.

Mr Potts recalled how his friend had been a prolific rider, claiming over 600 victories in point-to-point meetings and about another 100 on the track as well.

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