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Lockeridge eventer Andrew Nicholson says he was 'extremely fortunate' not be paralysed by his Gatcombe Park fall

Andrew Nicholson at Barbury - July 2015Andrew Nicholson at Barbury - July 2015New Zealand eventer Andrew Nicholson, who is based at Lockeridge, has issued a statement about his progress after surgery following a fall at Gatcombe Park's Festival of British Eventing on August 9.

Nicholson says that he is "extremely fortunate" not have suffered paralysis from the injury to his neck.  He says he will not be riding again this season.

This is his statement in full:   "I am very pleased to be back at home and wanted to take the opportunity to thank everyone myself for their kind messages and support which have meant a lot to me and my family.

In terms of my injury I realise I have been incredibly lucky.

My surgeon, Mr Jeremy Reynolds, told me that the injury I sustained to my neck would have caused paralysis at the time of injury, in 98% of cases.  I was extremely fortunate this did not happen.

I underwent an eight hour operation where they repaired the fractures and stabilised my cervical spine.  This procedure in itself was not without risk, and I cannot thank enough, the team of spinal surgeons at the John Radcliffe hospital, for what they have done.

Obviously I won't be riding again this season as it will take some time to fully recover.  Whilst I have to take things easy, I am up and about and fully mobile, and look forward to getting back to full fitness in due course.

Thank you in advance for allowing my family and I some privacy and time to rest and recover.”

Riding Cillnabradden Evo, Nicholson fell at the very last fence on the cross-country course. Cillnabradden Evo was not injured in the fall

Nicholson had already withdrawn his two top horses Avebury and Nereo, from the cross-country phase of Gatcombe's British Open Championship. They were both entered for the prestigious Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials (September 3-6.)

It was hoped that Nicholson and Avebury would win the Burghley CCI 4* title for a fourth successive year - topping his four wins in a row at the St James's Place Barbury International Horse Trials CCI 3* event.

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