Top Jockey Nathan Berry Has Died, Aged Just 23, From Epilepsy

Nathan Berry (right) celebrates a win at Randwick last year. Photo Ryan Pierse/Getty.

Sydney jockey Nathan Berry has died within hours of returning to Sydney after falling ill in Singapore two weeks ago. He was 23.

Berry was brought home for treatment of a severe form of epilepsy known as Norse syndrome, after collapsing during trackwork in Singapore on March 18 while on a four-month riding contract .

He’d been placed in an induced coma following a number of series, but his condition worsened and he was brought home on a medical flight earlier today.

In January Berry won the $2 million Magic Millions atop Unencumbered, which is due to race in Saturday’s Golden Slipper.

Berry’s twin brother, Tommy, is also a jockey and two months ago, Nathan married Whitney Schofield, daughter of top jockey Glyn Schofield. She kept a bedside vigil throughout his illness.

Tommy dedicated his win in the opening race at Rosehill Gardens last Saturday to his ill brother.

Nathan rode more than 350 winners during his short career, including three in Singapore.

Mr Peter V’landys, Racing NSW’s Chief Executive, who broke the news to the media this afternoon on behalf of the family, said the entire industry was distraught.

“Sadness is not a sufficient word to describe this tragedy. We are all very distressed and could not imagine the grief the family must be going through. This was a young man that had the world at his feet,” he said.

“Our sincere condolences go out to the Berry and Schofield families and Nathan’s wife Whitney.”

Australian Racing Board chairman, John Messara said Nathan Berry was “an outstanding talent”

“Nathan was a decent and principled young man respected by all,” he said.

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