Marcin Skrydlewski, groom of successful carriage driver Angela Flanagan has died in a motorcycle accident.
Twenty-eight-year-old Mr Skrydlewski was riding his motorbike in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire on Tuesday 26 May, when he apparently lost control.
No other vehicles are reported to have been involved.
Mr Skrydlewski had worked for Ms Flanagan for five years and was well-known on the driving trials circuit, being ever-present on the back of her carriage at club, national and international competitions.
After a win at Brighton last month (8-10 May) Angela told H&H that she “couldn’t have done it without him” (report, 21 May).
Ms Flanagan said: “Marcin’s Mum and Dad and his sister Jolanta have taken a lot of comfort in knowing just how many hearts he has touched in the five years he was with me.
“He was simply the very best groom and a friend — I’m glad that I told him that many times. A real gentle man, he had three loves in his life — his family, the horses and his Yamaha R1.”
Mr Skrydlewski’s funeral will be held in his native Poland tomorrow (Tuesday 9 June), the eve of his 29th birthday.