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20th Sep 2021

21-year-old jockey dies after mid-race fall

Ellen Fitzpatrick


A 21 year old jockey has sadly lost her life after a tragic accident during one of her races.

Representing Hungary in Istanbul, Turkey, Eszter Jeles fell off her horse Toms mid-race, and has since passed away from her injuries.

Eszter has since been described as a “hero” and died in hospital 13 days after suffering the devastating fall.

She was rushed to hospital on September 5th after falling and suffering head injuries, going into surgery the following day, but never made a full recovery.

In statement, the Hungarian Jockey Club confirmed Eszter’s death, saying: “We announce with deep pain and a shaky heart that Eszter Jeles is dead,’ the statement reads. ‘Her body was unable to overcome the injury caused by the accident two weeks ago.

“Esti was a hero, giving her life for horse racing. We lock your memory in our hearts forever.”

There was also a farewell ceremony held for the young jockey yesterday at the Veliefendi Racecourse where the tragic accident took place, with a minute’s silence taking place and a heartbreaking speech from her mum Andrea.

She said: “It is very difficult to describe the emotions we experience.

“Eszter specifically chose Turkey for horse riding. Years ago, in a post she made on her social media account, she said, ‘If I die one day because of my passion for speed, don’t be sad because I will be laughing at that time.

“We are grateful to everyone who took care of us, especially the Jockey Club of Turkey, and we will never forget your support.”

The Jockey Club of Turkey have sent their condolences, saying they are ‘deeply sad’ to hear of Eszter’s passing and pass on their “deepest condolences to Jeles family and her loved ones.”

Eszter was competing in the Longines-sponsored World Championship series and had been performing well before suffering the accident.