Jockey dies from injuries

YOUNG Coffs Harbour jockey Daniel Baker tragically lost his battle for life late yesterday.

The 23-year-old rider was rushed to Gold Coast hospital on Sunday evening after he fell from Hotshot Hayil in the Christmas Cup at Grafton races earlier in the day.

Baker suffered severe head injuries when his mount appeared to clip the heels of Concitare while angling for a run and was rushed to Grafton Base Hospital before being airlifted to the Gold Coast.

The 23-year-old had had emergency surgery to relieve swelling and bleeding to his brain, and was put on a life support machine.

Family spokesperson Gordon Yorke said doctors advised yesterday morning Daniel's condition had deteriorated severely and a decision was made to turn off the respirator.

"All his family and friends were around the bed with him and it was very moving at the end," Yorke said.

"The priest was with him and it was good we were all able to say goodbye.

"Not many of us get that chance and still, it's devastating."

Yorke said an appeal was being set up to support the family.

"Daniel, his mother, Debbie, and fianc?e, Linda (Humphreys) the three of them were so close," he said.

"Debbie and Linda are shattered, as you would imagine.

"I've spoken to the TRB today, to Ray Murrihy and Peter V'Landys and they know the situation and have agreed to support a trust fund and bank account being set up for Daniel's family.

"As soon as the details have been finalised we'll let you know."

No funeral arrangements have yet been made as the Queensland Coroner is still to deliver a report into the young man's death.

Stewards at Grafton are investigating the accident.

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