Fundraising drive launched for hunting enthusiast Alex Ott

Hunting enthusiast Alex Ott suffered serious spinal injuries while exercising a horse
Hunting enthusiast Alex Ott suffered serious spinal injuries while exercising a horse

Siobhán English

People within the equestrian industry are all too aware of the dangers of working with horses and competing in equestrian sport.

Horses are unpredictable creatures, and accidents can happen at any time, in the most unlikely of circumstances.

In recent weeks there have been a number of accidents in the hunting field, with Tipperary veterinary surgeon John Halley and West Wicklow Foxhounds' huntsman Rupert Macauley both currently recovering from falls.

Just last week, the Alex Ott Appeal was launched for another well-known hunting enthusiast, Alex Ott, who sustained a serious injury while exercising a horse close to his home in Meelin near Newmarket, Co Cork on November 19.

Vertebrae

This resulted in a serious injury to his C 5 vertebrae and resulted in him being airlifted to Cork University Hospital, where he continues to receive intensive treatment.

Alex, whose parents are German, has been involved with horses and equestrian sport all of his life.

He is a passionate and skilled horseman who many will know through his involvement in all aspects of the equestrian world both in north Cork and further afield.

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He even trained his first point-to-point winner last year.

Along with his partner Janet, they run Gooseberry Hill Horses, a successful business which is responsible for many of the hireling horses for the Duhallow Hunt.

Alex is a devoted partner to Janet, and father to their four young children - Zara, Andy, Luke, Ella.

It is hoped the upcoming fundraising events being organised through the Alex Ott Appeal will go some way towards assisting them as Alex faces a long recovery from his injuries.

A series of fun rides are currently been organised for Sunday, February 22.

Among the hunts taking part are the Duhallow Foxhounds, the Co Limerick Foxhounds, Stonehall Harriers, and Old Mill Foxhounds.

Castlemagner, Co Cork is the venue for the Duhallow ride on February 22.

Sponsorship

This will be run over some fantastic hunt country and will be suitable for riders of every level.

A minimum entry fee of €100 per rider is required to take part, but there are sponsorship cards available.

Everyone is encouraged to come out and enjoy the day to support this worthy cause.

All planned activities will be posted on the 'Alex Ott Appeal' facebook page.

Aside from the charity rides, donations large or small will be gratefully accepted in the coming months.

Alex's hunting colleagues and friends are also invited to suggest other events to raise funds.

Donations can be made through Bank of Ireland, Bank Place, Mallow. Sort code: 90-28-80. Account no: 86578216

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