Paralysed Jockey Freddy Tylicki suing Graham Gibbons for £6m
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Paralysed Jockey Freddy Tylicki is suing Jockey Graham Gibbons for £6m in respect of his life changing injuries resulting from a collision at Kempton Park on 2016.
Jockey Jim Crowley has given evidence in the High Court that Graham Gibbons’ breath smelled of alcohol in the training room on the day of Freddie Tylicki’s collision which left him partially paralysed and a permanent wheelchair user. However, when questioned, Crowley said that Gibbons did not appear ‘under the influence’ of alcohol. Gibbons counteracted this allegation stating that it was “one person’s opinion” and added that none of the other riders in the room have reported him smelling of alcohol, maintaining that this would have been reported to stewards.
Nonetheless, Gibbons has previously received four drink driving convictions and has not raced since 2016 when he attempted to pass off another person’s urine sample as his own.
Today is my 5th anniversary in a ♿️. There has been more downs then ups but hard things are put in our way, not to stop us, but to call out our courage and strength. Therefore I shall keep kicking 💪🏼. #5Years #Paraplegic #Wheelchair #Disability #Disabled #Sci #Complete #LiveLife pic.twitter.com/oidYGNwKlH
— Freddy Tylicki (@freddytylicki) October 31, 2021
Tylicki is currently suing Gibbons for £6million in respect of the “life changing injuries” he sustained at the 3.20pm at Kempton Park racecourse in Surrey on October 31, 2016. The trial is scheduled to run over 5 days. Tylicki argues that Gibbons was “dangerous in the extreme” and that he breached his duty of care owed by one jockey to another.
During the race, the horses ridden by Tylicki and Gibbons collided, resulting in Tylicki coming off and being trampled. Crowley gave further evidence that Gibbon’s mount, Madam Butterfly, had been “clearly off the rail” and disagreed with Gibbon’s lawer’s suggestion that there had not been sufficient space for Tylicki to go through safely. Tylicki absolutely disagrees with Gibbons’ statement “you brought this on yourself because you went for a gap that didn’t exist”.
Lord Edward Faulks QC, representing Tylicki, told the court “It is our case that the manner in which you rode at this point in the race was dangerous to the extreme.”
Tylicki’s legal team argue that Gibbons, who denies riding negligently, positioned his horse into the path of Tylicki’s mount, Nellie Deen, which was heading towards a gap between Gibbons horse and the running rail as they made their way to the home straight. They further argue that Gibbons, who eventually won the race, should have known Tylicki was “up the inner” and, if not, should have checked before making the move that allegedly led to the collision. Tylicki states he had stood up in his stirrups and pulled on his reins and shouted “Gibbo” in what he called a “shout for survival” to alert the other jockey and discourage him from persisting with his path that led to the dangerous collision. He stated “I was pulling back as much as I could as well as shouting Mr Gibbons’ name, then I went down and it went black”
Patrick Cosgrave, another jockey in that race, reported to a later steward’s enquiry he felt Tylicki may have been “ambitious” and “chancing it a bit” during the race. However, when video footage of the race was shown, Cosgrave admitted “there was obviously room for him to go there”.
The hearing continues on Wednesday 1st December and will include evidence from Jim McGrath for Tylicki and Charlie Lane for Gibbons.