“I had the mother and father of falls, with a bit of concussion, a fractured leg, broken hip, compressed vertebrae and a broken nose. The severity of my injuries, meant I had to get to a hospital asap. Now I’ve got my sights on Aintree.”Jockey Harrison Beswick, who fell from his horse Dancing Doug.
Jockey Harry Beswick knows more than most the importance of having a helipad as close to an emergency department as possible. He suffered multiple injuries after a drastic fall at Sedgefield; one of his worst ever, according to the jockey. Here is Harrison’s story.
“I’ve love riding. I’ve been doing it all my life. After riding lots of top class show ponies, and eventing and hunting, I started racing when I was 17. Now I’ve taken up a career as a jockey which I really enjoy.
I don’t remember anything about the day of the fall, which isn’t surprising after I suffered a bit of concussion. But I was told that the horse I was riding, Dancing Doug, slipped on the bend three furlongs out when I was racing at Sedgefield and I was thrown to the ground.
Thankfully the horse was fine, but I wasn’t as lucky, after getting a right kicking from the oncoming horses.
When I woke up in hospital, I didn’t have a clue what I was doing there. But despite my injuries, I was able to leave hospital after four days. Having a helipad close to the emergency department meant that I could get the treatment I urgently needed as quickly as possible which must have helped with my recovery. I even got back in the saddle just a few weeks after the fall. I just need to pass a few more tests and could be racing again very soon. But things are looking good and I’ve got my sights on Aintree in April.
I think the accident has definitely taught me that life is short, so you’ve got to enjoy yourself. There might be times that things might not go entirely my way at the yard, but regardless of what happens, I’m going to enjoy whatever I do and long may that continue.
Horseracing is the only sport where an ambulance follows you around the course, but I suppose you try to put that to the back of your mind when you’re racing. But after my fall, I now know that we have the best medical teams and air ambulance crews on hand to look after us whenever things go wrong. And having a helipad close to the emergency department at every major trauma centre near a racecourse, would provide even more reassurance. You never know when you might need it.”
Aintree Racecourse is offering a brand new hospitality experience to the HELP Appeal on the opening day of the Grand National Festival 2018.
On Thursday 12 April, guests will be the first to experience the new venue and benefit from a completely unique view of the racing at ground level, whilst enjoying a champagne reception, brunch and traditional afternoon tea, ensuring this will be an unforgettable experience. Funds raised from the event will help to build more hospital helipads across the country. Currently, there are 24 needed.