By Andrew Atkinson
Jack Berry MBE is walking the Aintree Grand National distance of 4 miles to raise money for the injured jockeys fund ‘Grand National weekend’.
“I’m no Captain Tom, but would like to raise £1,000 for the IJF,” Jack, 83, told me.
The Injured Jockeys Fund was the brainchild of President and founding Trustee John Oaksey inaugurated following the horrendous accidents of Tim Brookshaw and four months later Paddy Farrell in the 1964 Grand National. Both falls resulted in severe paralysis, immediately ending two careers.
“With virtually no compensation available at the time to help injured jockeys, the Farrell-Brookshaw fund was created,” said former jockey and trainer Jack.
“Support was instantaneous and following several name changes, tireless work by many for over 40 years, the IJF has become what it is today – a fund that has helped over 1,000 jockeys and which is still dedicated to helping injured jockeys whenever needed,” added Jack.
The IJF has heightened awareness of the risks of race riding, resulting in the racing authorities implementing many safety initiatives for the protection of Jockeys.
The 2021 Aintree Grand National on April 10 sees Cloth Cap, owned by three times National winner Trevor Hemmings, and trained by Jonjo O’Neill go to post as 4-1 favourite.
Any Second Now, Secret Reprieve (10-1); Kimberlite Candy, Burrows Saint, and Minella Times (12-1) are leading contenders in the betting.
Bristol De Mai, Magic Of Light, Discorama, Potters Corner, and The Storyteller feature at (20-1). Mister Malarky, Milan Major, Lord Du Mesnil, Acapella Bourgeois, Santini, Chris’s Dream (25-1); 33-1 bar.
Caption: Jack Berry MBE walking Grand National distance to raise money for IJF.