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‘Back where I belong’: top dressage rider returns to the saddle following brain bleed

Top international dressage rider Juan Matute Guimon is “back where he belongs”, having returned to the saddle nearly three months after suffering a bleed on the brain.

The 22-year-old Spanish rider, who made his senior championship team debut at the 2018 World Equestrian Games, was taken to hospital in a critical condition in Madrid on 5 May.

Juan was placed in an induced coma and underwent two operations to ease the pressure on his brain. His sister Paula provided regular updates on his condition, reporting that he had sat up for the first time on 31 May, and a CT scan on 1 June “couldn’t have been better”.

During his time in hospital Juan received an outpouring of support from the dressage community, with Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin, among those sharing messages of support.

Juan left hospital at the beginning of July, and last week he made a return to the saddle.

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He thanked his parents for proving to him that “everything is possible when you believe and have faith”.

“It feels absolutely amazing to be back where I belong,” he said. “I’m so fortunate and I feel blessed for being able to share my passion with my family.”

“For those of you who are struggling with something within your own life, or a family member around you is having a difficult time, believe in the Lord and have faith that everything will be all right.”

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