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McCoy’s day of ups and downs

By Tom Peacock

Tony McCoy demonstrated his admirable constitution once again at Fontwell as he shrugged off a crashing fall to ride the winner of the following race just half an hour later.

The 16-times champion looked to be about to notch up yet another winner when Nicky Henderson's State Benefit made an almighty blunder at the third last in the Debbie McCurry Memorial Beginners Chase.

That left the Kim Bailey-trained Real Treasure (7-1) in front and while the favourite Brackloon High was staying on strongly, he was a length and three-quarters down at the line.

“She was rated 119 over hurdles and she was running with a 7lb mares' allowance so we thought she had every right to be involved at the finish,” said Bailey.

“We did expect her to run very well and on the ratings she was entitled to win.

“Sean (Quinlan, jockey) said she didn't do a tap in front, that's why she was nearly caught, and it's also why he got a lead throughout from the horse that fell.”

Of his fall, McCoy said: “The horse landed on me. He was very brave early on and I wasn't sure I was going that well, so I thought I'd give him a squeeze rather than sitting against him and he just did nothing.

“He went from being very brave to not so brave and it's unfortunate that he got a heavy fall and he landed on my ankle.”

Despite limping into the paddock, McCoy took the ride on Henderson's Lets Get Serious (5-4 favourite) in the Wellpool Proud To Sponsor Kirsty Milczarek Novices Hurdle.

Even though the gelding looked green after the last, he showed a touch of class in beating Medinas by two and a half lengths.

“He's a nice type of horse and I was always going well enough,” McCoy said.

“The horse in front of him kept jumping across him and did everything to impede him, but he's a nice horse with a bit of class.”

Former jockey Keiran Burke has made a great start to his training career and Hunt Ball won his second race in eight days in the Wellpool Building & Maintenance Handicap Chase.

Sent off 5-4 favourite, Daryl Jacob had one of his easiest rides of the season guiding him to a 13-length win.

“I was really worried about the ground today as all his form and in point-to-points was on quick ground,” said Burke.

Meanwhile, Kauto Stone — a winner at last month’s Down Royal Festival — and Wishfull Thinking were among half a dozen defectors from the King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day.

Fifteen now remain in the Christmas feature, with Long Run the 6-4 favourite.

Long Run is joined by the likes of Paul Nicholls' four-time winner Kauto Star and his stablemate Master Minded.

Nicholls is likely to give Kauto Stone more time to recover after his second-placed finish in last weekend's Tingle Creek, while Wishfull Thinking is under a cloud after he weakened dramatically to finish a distant fifth.

The others to drop out were Midnight Chase, Quinz, Roberto Goldback and Wayward Prince.

Belfast Telegraph

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