Top jockey makes amazing recovery after spending a month in a coma as pal Frankie Dettori labels him a 'f***ing miracle'

A TOP jockey has made an amazing recovery from a month-long coma in which doctors gave him just a 50-50 chance of survival.

Filip Minarik fell off his horse mid-race in Germany last July, suffering head injuries, plus a broken leg and ankle.

The 45-year-old jockey was fighting for his life after falling into a coma – but after four months in hospital has returned home to his wife and young daughter.


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Legendary rider Frankie Dettori labelled Minarik a ‘f***ing miracle’ for his fight back from the brink.

Now up and moving and able to walk, Minarik’s physical recovery has been remarkable.

But wife Katja feared the worst after the fall at Mannheim track in Germany back in the summer.

Four-time German champion jockey Minarik – who has ridden almost 2,000 winners in his career – was unseated from his ride coming round a corner and fell to the ground head first.

There he lay motionless before being rushed to a nearby hospital and then transferred by helicopter to another a week later.

Poor Katja did not sleep for five days as the stress of the situation took its toll.

Minarik is back on his feet now but initially feared he would be wheelchair-bound after waking up.

A post shared by Filip Minarik (@fminarik)

He told “I was extremely scared. I woke up in a part of the hospital where most people were in wheelchairs.

“I called [fellow jockeys] Freddie Tylicki, Christian Zschache and Peter Heugl to ask them about life in a wheelchair.

“I was so scared that I could be wheelchair-bound. They told me, 'We did it, and if that's the case, you can do it too'.”

Minarik still cannot remember anything from the fall – and his overall memory has suffered as a result of the head trauma suffered.

He said: “From the last four months I can remember four weeks.

“Before that is a big, black hole.

“They still tell me today that damage from a traumatic brain injury remains.

“When I realised I couldn’t remember anything it was pure panic. I had incredible fears.

“The doctors now say my memory is coming back, but it could take up to a year.

“I trust them 100 per cent. When they tell me it is normal, I believe that.”

Minarik, who rode a winner at Ascot in the Shergar Cup last year, was aided through his recovery through a toniebox – a machine that played voice messages from four-year-old daughter Finja.

And now he sees continuing his recovery alongside his loved ones as his future – rather than getting back on a horse.

Asked about a possible comeback, Minarik, who had a Gofundme page set up for him that raised over £100,000 said: “I’m 45 years old and the end was in sight. I might have ridden another five years [before the accident] but not much longer.

“To be honest, even if I could physically, it is only a matter of time before the fear kicks in.

“I can’t come back at my age. Maybe at 25, but not at 45.”


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