Olympic showjumper Tim Stockdale dies after short illness

Tim Stockdale
Tim Stockdale

British Olympic show jumper Tim Stockdale, from Roade in Northants, has died from cancer aged just 54.

Stockdale represented Team GB at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, and just missed out on claiming a medal as the team finished fourth.

The Roade-based rider was only diagnosed with stomach cancer in October, and passed away at Cynthia Spencer Hospice in Northampton on Wednesday.

Stockdale rode for GB more than 50 times in the Nations Cup, and also competed in the World Equestrian Games in 2002 and the European Championships in 2009.

He also regularly worked as a BBC equestrian pundit, and appeared on the BBC One reality TV show Only Fools on Horses, which raised money for Sport Relief.

Stockdale broke his neck in three places in a fall in training in 2011, but recovered to compete again at the top level.

He was still competing and winning on the international circuit in September this year, prior to his diagnosis.

BBC presenter Clare Balding said: “Tim was a brilliant show jumper, a great coach, a wonderful team-mate on the TV, a warm, funny and hugely supportive human being.

“I feel so lucky to have known him. Love and hugs to all his family who will miss him so much.”

British Showjumping chairman Les Harris said: “Tim was an incredible man and there would be very few who could hold a light to him.

“My thoughts are with his wife Laura and their sons Joseph and Mark, whom we will be doing our utmost to support following their loss.”