Tim Stockdale dead at 54: Tributes pour in for British Olympic show jumper after he dies month after cancer diagnosis

BRITISH Olympic show jumper Tim Stockdale died yesterday aged 54 just a month after being diagnosed with stomach cancer.

Stockdale just missed out on a medal at Beijing 2008, finishing fourth in the team event.

 Tim Stockdale has died aged 54 just a month after being diagnosed with stomach cancer

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Tim Stockdale has died aged 54 just a month after being diagnosed with stomach cancer
 He represented Team GB at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and just missed out on a medal

PA:Press Association
3
He represented Team GB at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and just missed out on a medal

He was a popular rider and person in the equestrian community and represented Great Britain more than 50 times.

Stockdale also rode in the World Equestrian Games in 2002 and European Championships seven years later.

But arguably his most incredible achievement was getting back in the saddle after sustaining three breaks in his neck during training in 2011.

Not only did he return to show jumping but he was able to compete at the top level despite the injury.

Tributes poured in for the Nottingam-born rider, who appeared in a Sport Relief special episode of Only Fools on Horses.

Clare Balding said: "This is so sad. 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 chief executive Iain Graham said: "Tim’s passing will leave a huge hole in the sport.

 Stockdale was a popular figure in the equestrian community and will be sorely missed

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Stockdale was a popular figure in the equestrian community and will be sorely missed

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"He gave an incredible amount of time to the sport to help for the greater good and he was someone I had high regard and admiration for."

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

Stockdale leaves behind his wife Laura and sons Joseph and Mark.

Both children are competing on the international sporting stage as they look to emulate their father's success – Joseph in showjumping and Mark in golf.

BRITISH Olympic show jumper Tim Stockdale died yesterday aged 54 just a month after being diagnosed with stomach cancer.