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It is with great sadness we report the death of Jockey Lorna Brooke after a horror fall at Taunton this month, the Injured Jockeys Fund (IJF) has announced in a statement.
A statement from the IJF was released on Monday morning, which read: “It is with deep sadness that we have to share the tragic news that Lorna Brooke passed away yesterday.
“Her family thank everyone for their kindness in the last ten days, particularly the staff at Southmeads Hospital who were so professional. They will be having a private funeral and will hold a celebration of Lorna’s life once Covid-19 restrictions allow.”
It has been a great month for racing but this tragedy will put a huge cloud over the industry.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam
Update – Saturday 17th April
A statement from the Injured Jockeys Fund (IJF) was released on behalf of her family on Friday evening, which read: “Amateur jockey Lorna Brooke is currently in intensive care at Southmead Hospital, Bristol. She is critical, but stable.
“Her family thank everyone for their good wishes but request privacy at this difficult time.”
Update 14th April
In what was a horrible fall and Lorna Brooke has been in Bristol since and there had only been one update stating that she was in a “serious but stable condition”. But her friend Kate Jones has posted an update on Facebook.
“Taken Sue to see Lorna today, due to covid regulations Sue is the only visitor allowed to see Lorna. However, I did manage to have a phone call with her, and as you would expect from the total warrior that she is her spirits are so positive!!! She is fighting her way back to recovery already”
“Her Op went well and her neck is now pinned and plated so is stable, Due to the nature of the injury, it is now a waiting game to allow the swelling to subside and hopefully allow her to regain movement. This is all in the balance so keep any prayers coming that she is able to recover to some sort of normality. It’s going to be a long road to recovery but Lorna is already talking about being able to overcome it and I’ve told her there is no option but to better as we are all wishing her to be.”
Brooke had ridden seven winners from around 200 rides over the last few seasons and had been riding Orchestrated for Lady Susan Brooke.
Clerk of the course Jason Loosemore told the Racing Post: “She [Lorna] was airlifted to Bristol Southmead Hospital for ongoing assessment and has been stabilised and was conscious throughout.
Count Otto put his assured race fitness to good use when scoring for the fourth time since the turn of the year with a tenacious success in the bet365 Handicap.
Having been kept busy during the winter the Amanda Perrett-trained Sir Prancealot gelding showed a willing attitude to back up his three victories on the all-weather this year in the six furlong contest.
Though pressed late on by Chil Chil, the six year old rallied well under Jim Crowley to hold off the Andrew Balding-trained gelding by a neck.
Perrett said of the 9-1 winner: “He is a wonderful little horse and he has been very consistent since January. He had a bit of an injury after Epsom (in July 2020) as something galloped into the back of him so it gave him a nice holiday. He has come back and it is great to see him do it on the turf.
“He was only beaten a neck at the track last year and he loves fast ground. From January that’s his fourth win of the year and any horse that does that is worth their weight in gold.
“He ran in the consolation race for the Stewards’ Cup a couple of times before. He doesn’t mind coming down a hill as long as he has the last furlong on the level.
“It would be nice to have a go in the big one (Stewards’ Cup). One of his owners would love to run in the Ayr Gold Cup but usually the ground has gone by then.”