THE racing world is praying for a quick recovery for top young trainer Sam Thomas.
The Welshman, 38, was injured in an awful helicopter crash on Tuesday evening.
Thomas was travelling back with four others, including much-loved multi-millionaire owner Dai Walters.
One of Wales' richest men with a net worth estimed at around £264m, Walters remains in hospital under the care of doctors.
Thomas, along with the other four in the chopper, have returned home with minor injuries.
Who is horse trainer Sam Thomas?
Thomas was one of the country's best jockeys before becoming a trainer.
He won a number of big races, including the Cheltenham Gold Cup – jump racing's most prestigious contest – aboard the legendary Denman in 2008.
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The year before he won the Grade 1 Betfair Chase with Kauto Star and Tingle Creek with Twist Magic.
After his Festival magic in 2008, things started to unravel later in the year.
He suffered heartbreak when falling at the last in Betfair Chase on Kauto Star and again in the Hennessy Gold Cup on legendary racehorse Big Buck's.
Thomas was leading both races at the time.
He retired in 2015 with 509 winners to his name and just shy of £6million in prize money.
Opening up to Sun Racing on the difficulty he endured when he quit the saddle, Thomas said: "I was at rock bottom. I dropped into a dark hole. I couldn’t deal with it.
"Saying ‘goodbye’ to people I’d virtually lived with for more than ten years was hard to take. Yes, it as a shock.
"I couldn’t bear to look back after leaving the weighing-room for the last time.
"I became mentally shattered, and I shall always be grateful to my family for helping me through those terrible days.
"My dad was immense. He’s been the biggest influence on my life. He’s pushed me harder than anyone else.
"He’s very competitive, and he’s made me the same."
What horses does Sam Thomas train?
Thomas' most famous horse is Iwilldoit, who won last year's Welsh Grand National in simply abysmal conditions.
Thomas has a close relationship with Walters – who has placed the bulk of his horses with the Cardiff-based trainer.
The pair have enjoyed success already this season with Good Risk At All, who won at Carlisle last Sunday.
Among the other horses Walters has with Thomas are Deere Mark, Lump Sum, Steel Ally, Skytastic, Vincenzo and Mind Sunday.
The mightily impressive Our Power – jointly owned by Walter and Potter Group – is another trained by Thomas.
The seven-year-old landed connections just shy of £60,000 with a convincing victory in the Grade 3 London Gold Cup at Ascot last weekend.
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