Trainer Garry Kirkup was seriously injured in a fatal motor vehicle accident near Junee on Sunday, 3rd December 2017, that tragically cost the life of his partner, jockey Samara Johnson.
Update on Thursday, 18th January 2018: Racehorse trainer Garry Kirkup is making good progress following injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident in December. Garry spent three weeks in Canberra Hospital receiving treatment for injuries to his abdomen, hand and foot, before he was discharged prior to Christmas. Garry's sister Julie reported that his internal injuries are healing as well as expected. His hand is also improving, however, it will be ongoing recovery for his injured foot. Julie said that a boot will likely be fitted to Garry's foot and it will be about six weeks before he can walk on it again.
Update 4:30pm on Thursday, 21st December 2017: Garry Kirkup will be discharged from Canberra Hospital tomorrow. Garry’s son, Ben, said he will be released into home care and still has a few months of healing to go. Garry suffered abdominal injuries, as well as injuries to his hand and foot in the accident. No time frame has been set on when Garry will be back at work in full capacity, but he is aiming to be back at the stables overseeing operations early in the new year.
Ben said “Samara was a huge part of Kirkup Racing and we are not going to lie, it’s going to be very tough to operate without her, but she would want us to, so we will honour her by giving it our best. Garry would like to thank all well-wishers over the last few weeks, it has helped him to remain strong in what has been a terribly tough time for him physically and mentally. He still has a long road ahead of him but with the support of such a great industry we are confident he will be back.”
A ‘go-fund-me’ page has been setup to help provide financial assistance for Garry to keep his stables in operation and to cover medical bills and payments. To donate click here.
Update at 2:45pm on Tuesday, 5th December 2017: Injured trainer Garry Kirkup has woken from surgery, which was delayed until this morning at Canberra Hospital. Doctors have reported everything has gone as well as possible following abdominal surgery. Garry is in a lot of pain which is being managed. He will have further surgery on his hand and foot injuries over the coming days when swelling subsides. Visitors are being restricted at the moment. The Canberra racing community has pulled together to support Gary and his family during this time, with many trainers pitching in to care for his horses. ACT-based chaplain, Bob Prior, has provided support to family and friends since the accident occurred on Sunday. Sydney-based racing chaplain, Vicki Walker, also visited the Canberra racing community today to offer further support.
Update at 11:30am on Monday, 4th December 2017: Trainer Garry Kirkup’s son, Ben, has reported that his father remains in an induced coma at Canberra Hospital following yesterday’s motor vehicle accident near Junee. Ben said that Garry underwent abdominal surgery last night and has since undergone further CT scans this morning on his spine and brain, which he said have been cleared of injury. Garry has suffered abdominal injuries which will require further surgery today and has also suffered injuries to his hand and foot. Fortunately, Garry’s vital organs were not damaged.