McNamara out of coma and ready for move nearer home
Monday 25 March 2013
With the domestic sport’s downtime between the Cheltenham and Aintree festivals exacerbated by cancellations, postponements and congealingly cold weather, there was at least one piece of warming news today. It concerned the improved condition of J T McNamara, the Irish amateur who fractured two neck vertebrae in a fall at Cheltenham 12 days ago.
The 37-year-old is now conscious and alert, out of the coma induced by doctors in the early stages of his recovery and, although still needing help with his breathing, is set to be transferred from Bristol to a Dublin hospital to be closer to his family.
A statement on behalf of the family by Dr Adrian McGoldrick, the Irish Turf Club senior medical officer and Lisa Hancock, chief executive of the Injured Jockeys’ Fund, said: “J T McNamara remains in a stable condition at Frenchay Hospital, Bristol. He is now fully alert but requires full-time ventilation at present. In due course he will be transferred to the National Spinal Unit at the Mater Hospital, Dublin. His wife, Caroline, and family very much appreciate everyone’s continued good wishes and prayers on JT’s behalf.”
McNamara’s plight puts much else in perspective, including the perils of betting in advance, which were highlighted for the second day in succession. After Aidan O’Brien had cast doubts on the participation of Kingsbarns in the 2,000 Guineas, William Haggas ruled the ante-post favourite Nine Realms out of Saturday’s re-arranged Lincoln. “He’s not going to run,” said the Newmarket trainer of the four-year-old, who had been as short as 6-1. “I can’t see the ground being anything other than horrible.”
Conditions for the mile contest, for which Captain Bertie and Lahaag are vying for favouritism at 7-1, are indeed likely to be demanding. At Doncaster today there was still some of the frozen snow that led to the Lincoln’s abandonment three days ago left on the track, with heavy ground predicted once it thaws.
The unseasonal weather has put paid to Friday’s charity Lambourn Open Day, which normally attracts crowds of up to 10,000 on one of the few days racing is not scheduled.
Looking ahead to Aintree, one of the meeting’s regulars, Oscar Whisky, is to return to his comfort zone of two and a half miles after flopping over three at Cheltenham. The Nicky Henderson eight-year-old will attempt to complete a hat-trick in the Aintree Hurdle, with a novice chasing campaign planned for next season.
Chris McGrath’s Nap: Bint Alzain (3.20 Lingfield)
Turns out after a close fourth on the track yesterdau, her first run after a break, staying on to get within a length of the winner.
Next best: Iron Butterfly (4.10 Fontwell)
Lightly raced on the Flat over distances too short for her stout pedigree, but is improving with experience over hurdles.
One to watch: Elusive Hawk (David Evans), carried wide into the Lingfield straight today, must be followed next time after his strong third-place finish.
As Voltaire once said, “Ice cream is exquisite. What a pity it isn’t illegal”
Latest in Sport
Mario Balotelli to Liverpool: Best memes as Twitter reacts to imminent £16m transfer
Manchester United transfer news: Louis van Gaal joins Arsenal and Chelsea in the race for Sami Khedira
Mario Balotelli takes 50 per cent pay cut to join Liverpool as Samuel as Eto’o waits in the wings if deal falls through
Crystal Palace next manager latest: Palace consider Ally McCoist - EXCLUSIVE
Click here for the full story." title="When a youngster asked for an autograph outside Manchester City's training ground, Balotelli demanded to know why the boy was playing truant. After the child revealed he was being bullied, Balotelli drove the boy and his mother to the school in question so he could tackle the bully himself. He demanded to see the headmaster to make him aware of the issue and then mediated between the two boys to resolve the problem. A source said: 'Mario feels strongly about bullying.' Click here for the full story." width="88" height="52" />Mario Balotelli: The funniest stories
- 1 'Alien thigh bone' on Mars: Excitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
- 2 Mother fed her daughter tapeworms to make her skinny for pageant
- 3 Crystal Palace next manager latest: Palace consider Ally McCoist - EXCLUSIVE
- 5 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
Disgusting, frustrating, but intriguing: how the country really feels about its politicians
Bin bag full of cats' heads discovered near Manchester's Curry Mile
Negotiable: Harrington Starr: Market Administrator (1st line Support, Trade Fl...
£35000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Service Desk Analyst (Windows, Active Dire...
Negotiable: Harrington Starr: Data Support Analyst (Linux, Solaris, Windows Se...
Negotiable: Harrington Starr: Helpdesk Support Engineer (Windows, MS Office, E...