Irish Equestrian community united in grief after death of much-loved young Mayo Showjumper Jack Dodd

  • 7 June 2018, 12:23

On Wednesday June 6th 2018, Horse Sport Ireland and the Irish equestrian community received the devastating news that 25-year-old Jack Dodd from Foxford, Co Mayo, tragically passed away in University Hospital, Maastricht, The Netherlands, as a result of the injuries he sustained in a car accident in Belgium last week.

Jack Dodd (Photo: Fabio Petroni/Young Riders Academy)

Twenty-five-year-old Jack Dodd was an extremely talented young Showjumper who represented Ireland from Youth level up to Senior Level. In 2014, Jack was a member of the Irish Young Rider Team at the FEI European Championships in Arezzo, Italy. He previously worked with top Show Jumpers Shane Breen, Cameron Hanley and Cian O’Connor. In 2016, Jack Dodd won a place in the hugely prestigious International Young Riders Academy – a program dedicated to young talented Show Jumpers.

In 2017 Jack attended the FEI Sports Forum in Lausanne, Switzerland, where he spoke passionately about how important the FEI Nations Cup series is in helping Young Riders make the breakthrough at the top level.

Jack was based for a period at Bertram Allen’s yard in Germany and after spending several years learning from top riders in yards all across the world, Jack set up his own base in Balen, Belgium earlier this year. From his new base, Jack was hugely successful in Young Horse competitions and also in high-level international classes throughout Europe and was destined for a career at the top level of the sport before his life was tragically cut short.

Horse Sport Ireland CEO Ronan Murphy said,

“On behalf of Horse Sport Ireland, I wish to offer sincere condolences to Jack’s family and the many friends he made at home and when representing Ireland with distinction around the world. Jack Dodd was an extremely talented and hard-working young man and was much loved by all who met him. This is apparent in the many tributes being paid to Jack since the tragic news of his passing reached us on Wednesday. Our thoughts are with Jack’s family and friends at this very difficult time.”

Irish Show Jumping Development Team Manager Michael Blake, who knew Jack Dodd for many years, paid tribute to him and said:

“I and everybody else am devastated at the tragic news of Jacks passing. I have known Jack most of his life and admired the mantra which he applied to his work, “success is the reward for effort.” Jack knew what he wanted and went after it. In 2007 he was part of the Irish Children On Horses (U14)) European Championship Silver medal winning team. He was on the Young Rider European Team in Arezzo in 2014. I remember thinking then how focused and professional he was, while still maintaining a genuine niceness. When Jack left Coolcronan Equestrian Centre in Foxford, Mayo, he was single-minded on the journey he was going to make. He knew, that to be the best, he must learn from the best and spent time in many top yards. In 2016 we nominated Jack for the Rolex Young Riders Academy and he was inducted into the Academy. Jack really learned his trade here and made a lasting impression on all whom he met. Jack recently set up his own business and was doing really well. I offer my heartfelt sympathy to his parents Trish and David, along with all of his family and numerous friends. Jack, we will miss you terribly,  you were truly one of lives great guys.  Rest in peace, heaven has gained an angel.”

All at Horse Sport Ireland extend our deepest sympathies to all of Jack’s family and friends during this difficult period. May he rest in peace.

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