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Irish jockey in fall at Aintree battles for life

Irish jockey Peter Toole was fighting for his life today after a fall on Grand National day.

Doctors put the 22-year-old into a coma after he suffered a bleed on his brain at Aintree on Saturday.

Medics were today attempting to determine the extent of his brain injuries, which he incurred when he was knocked unconscious in a horrific fall.

Peter, of Lagore, Dunshaughlin, Co Meath, was injured when his 100-1 shot Classic Fly fell at the first fence during the Maghull Novices' Chase.

He is in a critical condition at the Walton Centre for Neurology and Neurosurgery where his parents James and Fidelma are keeping a vigil.

Trainer Charlie Mann said Peter would remain in an induced coma until at least today.

"He has bleeding on the right-hand side of his brain. He also dislocated a shoulder, which has been put back in place. He's on a ventilator, and it's not great," he said.

Champion jockey Tony McCoy wrote online: "Thoughts and prayers are with Peter Toole who has a serious head injury. Will keep u all posted when we get some news. Let's pray it's good news."

Irish trainer Tom Taaffe, who employed Peter as an amateur jockey, said Peter was an "inspired" young man.

Arthur Whiting, who trains Classic Fly, said he was distraught over Peter's fall.

He said it is "very, very sad", adding he feels "so bad about it".

Grand National day was also marred by the death of two horses, Ornais and Dooneys Gate.

comurphy@herald.ie


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