Nicola Wilson update: event rider moves hospitals after Badminton fall


Nicola Wilson has moved to a specialist spinal unit closer to home, with the ambulance crew making a stop at her yard.

Nicola, who sustained serious injuries in a cross-country fall at Badminton Horse Trials with her European champion ride JL Dublin, was moved to the spinal rehabilitation unit at James Cook University Hospital yesterday (25 May). She had been receiving care at Southmead Hospital in Bristol following her fall on 7 May.

“We would like to thank everyone who has been so kind on the journey so far,” said a statement on Nicola’s Facebook page.

“The transfer team were a lovely crew who called in at our home to visit the horses on their way back to Bristol, Nic obviously had a bit of horse chat in the ambulance. Dublin had his photo taken with the ambulance, which he loved!”

An update from British Equestrian said that Nicola was “comfortable, in good spirits and is pleased to be closer to home” after the “long and tiring journey”. She will continue her “lengthy rehabilitation” at the specialist spinal centre, which can offer her “expert support”.

British Equestrian confirmed that “Nicola’s recovery is progressing well, with sensation and movement returning to her lower and upper limbs”.

The statement continued: “Nicola, husband Alastair and mother Mary Tweddle would like to say a heartfelt thank you to all of the staff who has looked after her so well at Southmead Hospital in Bristol. The care and attention she has had there really has been second to none and for that they’re very grateful.

“They thank everyone for the numerous cards and messages of support; each and every one is greatly appreciated.”

A previous update said that “Dubs” is “happy and content, and is enjoying the sunshine and the spring grass”.

One of Nicola’s other advanced rides, the 2021 Blenheim eight- and nine-year-old CCI4*-S winner Coolparks Sarco (“Jeremy”), was in action with Piggy March at the Fairfax & Favor Rockingham International Horse Trials at the weekend.

“As Coolparks Sarco was feeling so good in his preparations for Bramham International (8-12 June) and as Nicola’s road to recovery is going to be lengthy, she and James and Jo Lambert have asked Nicola’s good friend Piggy to ride him as she only has one horse entered at Bramham,” said an update on 20 May.

Piggy and Jeremy finished third in the open intermediate on their dressage score of 23.

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