Yanagida in critical condition following Cambridge fall

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Taiki Yanagida

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New Zealand jockey Taiki Yanagida is in intensive care being treated for serious head and spinal injuries following a fall during a race at Cambridge on Wednesday.

The Japanese-born rider was aboard the Lance O’Sullivan and Andrew Scott-trained Te Atatu Pash when his mount was brought down with 250m left to run and he landed heavily.

The popular jockey was knocked unconscious in the accident and was placed in an induced coma at the track before being transported to Waikato Hospital.

“At this stage Taiki is in the ICU at Waikato Hospital still with head and spinal injuries. He is in an induced coma and on a breathing apparatus,” Yanagida’s manager Ted McLachlan said.

“Taiki’s mother and sister will arrive tomorrow (Friday) at 8am from Japan. We will know a lot more tomorrow after his mother has been there and New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing have been good paying and arranging for flights.”

A universally-liked member of the racing community, the 28-year-old has been riding in New Zealand for five seasons, indentured to O’Sullivan and Scott for the majority of that time.

Yanagida made the transition to the senior riding ranks earlier this year and finished the season with a total of 42 wins.

He made a good start to the new season when victorious earlier on the card at Cambridge aboard the Chris Wood-trained Rusavy.

Yanagida has 162 career wins to his name and has had three stakes wins this year including Dragon Queen in the Group 2 Westbury Classic (1400m), Bellatrix Black in the Group 3 Sunline Vase (2100m) and Germanicus in the Listed Flying Stakes (1400m).

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