A jockey stomped on by a frightened horse may spend several months out of the saddle to heal but her injuries have not dampened her love of riding, her mother says.
Natasha Faithfull was flown to Royal Perth Hospital on Saturday after suffering broken bones and punctured lungs when a horse she was riding at an Albany beach was spooked, fell down an embankment and rolled onto her.
As the horse scrambled to stand up it “stomped all over the top of her”, her mother Samantha Faithfull said.
A relieved Ms Faithfull spoke outside the 25-year-old’s hospital room to let everyone know that while Natasha had been in a “very bad way”, she was taking “baby steps” to recovery and was grateful for the support she had been offered.
“We are just having a few hurdles with her lungs, and trying to get the fluid off her lungs which are still deflated,” she said.
“She’s going to have a bit of a battle ahead of her but she is stable, she’s awake and a little bit angry at times – so that’s a really good sign that she’s got her little bit of an attitude with her.”
Her mother said doctors had warned them it could take three to five months for Natasha’s injuries to heal after she sustained punctured lungs, a broken collarbone, broken shoulder, broken ribs, broken bones in her back and a lacerated liver in the horrific accident.
“It’s going to be a long road… but she will be back on that horse pumping some more winners home very soon,” Ms Faithfull said.
“There’s no stopping her, she does it because she loves it and she wouldn’t do anything else.”
The nasty fall came the day after the talented hoop rode a winning double for her long-time trainer in Albany.
Ms Faithfull said thankfully fellow track rider, Tamara Playle, had been with Natasha and rushed to help her after she and the horse fell about 4m.
She said Natasha had been choking and struggling to breathe and paramedics had needed to call firefighters for help to get her out of the deep ditch.
Ms Faithfull said she owed Ms Playle a debt of gratitude, believing the outcome could have been a lot different if she had not been there to help.
She also thanked everybody for their support and loving, caring messages since the incident, saying they had really helped Natasha.