Grand National-winning jockey Graham Lee, 48, is now paralysed from the neck down after a spinal fracture he suffered falling off a horse, as his family raise £200,000 to fund his care

2 weeks ago 11
  • Graham Lee suffered life-changing injuries during fall at Newcastle Racecourse 
  • He is now paralysed from the neck down, with family raising £200,000 for him 
  • Lee said he felt 'humbled' by the support towards him after donations flooded in 

By Oli Gamp

Published: 07:53 EDT, 3 April 2024 | Updated: 08:08 EDT, 3 April 2024

Jockey Graham Lee has been tragically paralysed from the neck down having fractured his spine after falling off his horse in November. 

The 48-year-old Grand National winner suffered life changing injuries during the fall at Newcastle Racecourse last year after being unseated from his mount Ben Marduk as the stalls opened for a sprint handicap.

Lee, a hugely respected figure within the weighing room, was taken to hospital for further assessment and treatment before being moved to an intensive care unit. Last month, he was pictured in a wheelchair.

It has now been revealed that Lee suffered a cervical fracture that damaged his spinal cord - and now has now movement below the head and neck. 

A Just Giving page has been set up by his daughter Amy that has raised more than £200,000 to help give him support - with donations going towards the Injured Jockeys Fund charity. 

Grand National-winning jockey Graham Lee has been paralysed from the neck down after falling off his horse last year 

The 48-year-old - who previously enjoyed a successful National Hunt career - has ridden 47 winners (pictured on Quiet Reflection)

Lee said he was 'humbled' by the response to the fundraiser, aided by the Good Racing Club - which has helped set up the Graham Lee Racing Club. They were also instrumental in a similar gesture towards former Leeds Rhinos star and MND sufferer Rob Burrow. 

'I'm really humbled that a fundraising racing club has been set up in my honour, and that Paul Hanagan has chosen the horse for me. I've been shown videos of the horse and she looks very promising. No pressure Paul, but I hope you've picked a winner!

'I've seen what The Good Racing Company has achieved for Rob Burrow and how it's united the racing community. 

'I have high hopes that this new racing club achieves the same success with We've Got This, and my family and I look forward to following the excitement and being part of this new community.'

A fundraiser set up for Lee has since raked in more than £200,000 as the jockey said he felt 'humbled'

His daughter Amy added: “The generosity of the Good Racing Club and Injured Jockeys’ Fund has been huge,” she said. “It’s made a world of difference already. 

'Dad has always just been Dad to me. It had never really clicked with me how much people see him as a role model. I thought "Wow, that is amazing". Dad’s condition is still the same but we are hoping that he is going to get discharged soon.'

The married father of two, has enjoyed a superb career - with his biggest moment as a jump jockey coming in 2004 when he partnered Amberleigh House for Red Rum’s trainer Ginger McCain in the Grand National to an emotional triumph. 

His wins have also included the 2005 World Hurdle (now known as the Stayers Hurdle) on Inglis Drever when he was the retained rider for leading owner Graham Wylie. 

Lee is the only jockey who has ridden the winner of both the Grand National and the Gold Cup

Lee made the switch to Flat racing in 2012 and he continued to enjoy tremendous success.

His red-letter day arrived at Royal Ascot in 2015 when he partnered Trip To Paris to victory in the Gold Cup.

To further prove his versatility, Lee won York’s Nunthorpe Stakes — the shortest Group One in the Flat calendar — in 2018 when he guided Alpha Delphini home for trainer Bryan Smart.

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