Watch: Emotional minute's silence for JT McNamara at the Galway Races
IT has been a difficult day for Irish horse racing.
Just hours after the death of JT McNamara (41), Galway racegoers tried to enjoy the evening's action while also remembering the departed jockey.
McNamara fractured two vertebrae in his neck after being thrown from his horse Galaxy Rock in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup on March 14, 2013 at the Cheltenham festival and was paralysed from the neck down.
Many well known figures in Irish racing such as AP McCoy and JP McManus paid tribute to the well known jockey throughout the day.
Read more: McCoy hails 'remarkable' JT McNamara
In addition to those tributes, an impeccable minute's silence was observed at Ballybrit racecourse this evening as clearly emotional racing fans tried to come to terms with today's news.
With hats off and bowed heads, over 20 of Ireland’s leading jockeys lined up to pay their respects to JT, who passed away this morning.
Brian Kavanagh, Chief Executive of Horse Racing Ireland, also attended the event to remember JT in Galway, and said: “Everyone is in shock”.
“It puts a bit of a cloud over Galway but everyone is thinking of JT’s family and his wide circle of friends,” he said.
“He was a hero to so many people in the saddle, perhaps even more so as he had his injury and the way he handled it.”
“People followed him from an early age,” he added. “While he was an amateur jockey, they said he was as good a rider as any professional.”
“He had a great talent for developing young horses and teaching and educating young horses. He was an artist in the saddle,” he continued.
Video via RTE Racing.