McNamara taken to intensive care unit

John Thomas McNamara, who was paralysed in a fall at last year’s Cheltenham Festival, was in the intensive care unit of Limerick Regional Hospital last night, having been taken ill the previous day.

McNamara taken to intensive care unit

Dr Adrian McGoldrick, chief medical officer with the Turf Club, said yesterday: “I can confirm that John Thomas was admitted to hospital in Limerick on Thursday with a respiratory infection.

“I have been in touch with the medical staff and with John Thomas’s wife, Caroline, and John Thomas was in a stable condition in the hospital’s intensive care unit this afternoon,” he said.

Mr McNamara returned to Co Limerick from the North West Spinal Injuries Centre in Southport, Merseyside, last month and has been staying at his mother-in-law’s house, while modifications to his own home, nearby, are carried out.

He suffered his injuries — fractures of his C3 and C4 vertebrae — in a first-fence fall from Galaxy Rock in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Chase at Cheltenham in March 2013.

A father of three, Mr McNamara, a former champion point-to-point rider, rode four winners at the Cheltenham Festival including the National Hunt Chase on Rith Dubh in 2002 and the same race on Teaforthree in 2012.

In 2005 he rode Spot Thedifference to victory in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase and two years later he partnered Drombeag to victory in the Foxhunter Chase.

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