Young horse rider in the running to become Miss England after suffering a serious injury
- Credit: THE BLUE STUDIOS
A stable worker is in the running to become Miss England after falling off a horse and suffering serious injuries.
Jade Gooch, 25, from Norwich city centre, had her jaw rebuilt in an eight-hour operation after being forced off a two-year-old horse during training at Newmarket Racecourse in March.
She had previously entered the Miss England 2017 competition and is 'overwhelmed' after finding out she is through to the semi-finals on June 4 in Nottinghamshire, when she could also be crowned Miss Norwich.
The former City of Norwich School and Easton and Otley College student was interviewed by Miss England judges, took part in a runway challenge and had a picture taken one month after the operation.
Miss Gooch said: 'I was in Addenbrooke's Hospital with a brace around my jaw when I found out I had been invited to an audition and wasn't keen on going, but my friends persuaded me to go as I had nothing to lose.'
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She has ridden race horses at Newmarket for six years and the accident happened in the stalls at the start of a practice session.
She dislocated her knees and broke her jaw on both sides which was fixed with four metal plates and two screws at Addenbrooke's.
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The 25-year-old was in intensive care for three days after the accident and is still off work because of treatment including physiotherapy.
She expects to return to Newmarket in six weeks.
Miss Gooch said: 'I was shocked when I found out I was through to the semi-finals. During the audition there were so many beautiful girls and I didn't have much confidence at the time after my accident. I have to pinch myself.'
She added it was hard to accept the changes to her face as she had a prominent scar from the operation.
The Miss England contest raises money for the Beauty with a Purpose charity which raises money for disadvantaged children around the world.
It was created by Julia Morley in 1972.
Miss Gooch said: 'I feel very strongly about the charity.'
Miss England 2017 contestants have to raise money for the worthy cause.
The competition final is on July 14 and to cast your vote for Miss Gooch text MISS SEMI05 to 63333 or call 09013071218 plus 05 by noon on Wednesday, May 17.