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Cold as ice: Mackay enters the freezer as return to saddle nears

Nicky Mackay: hoping to back in the saddle next month
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Nicky Mackay will enter a cryotherapy ice chamber next week to step up his recovery from the broken leg suffered in a bizarre accident at Chelmsford in March.

The 32-year-old broke his femur and suffered three further fractures to his left leg when his mount Royalistic crashed through the rails in the closing stages of a 1m2f maiden.

After a long period of recovery, Mackay is hoping to be back riding out for John Gosden in around three weeks' time, with the aim of a return to race-riding in August.

Mackay, who had been enjoying his best ever start to a campaign, is following in the footsteps of fellow jockeys including Ryan Moore and Sir Anthony McCoy in entering a cryotherapy chamber, temperatures in which can plummet to -145C, and they are used to aid bone and tissue recovery.

The jockey said: "The surgeons are pleased with my progress and say the bone is 75 per cent mended. It's the ligaments that are taking time to heal and I've been having ice baths to help the tissue repair.

"Next Wednesday I'm booked to go for a session in a cryotherapy chamber in London. I know it will be cold but it has to be done if I'm going to get back in the saddle and ride out in about three weeks."

Mackay has been among the Gosden ground crew on work days in recent days and is eager to get back.

He added: "It's been a bit frustrating as I was flying before the injury. Hopefully I can come back to ride some of the nice two-year-olds we have to run in the autumn."

Mackay also had news of his father Allan, whom he visits most days and is still in rehab at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Buckinghamshire after being left paralysed from the chest down following a gallops fall in March.

He said: "My brother Jamie is getting married at the end of July and dad has said he wants to be there. He's doing great with his physio and is in remarkable spirits considering what he's been through." 

I know it will be cold but it has to be done if I'm going to get back in the saddle and ride out in about three weeks
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