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Jacob will miss Christmas crackers due to 10-day ban

By Chris McGrath

Daryl Jacob, who won this year’s Grand National on Neptune Collonges, was given a 10-day ban at Wincanton after appearing to mistake a path across the track for the winning line and momentarily easing up on Ulis De Vassy.

Though only a neck down to Quaddick Lake at the line, his mount barely had time to lose momentum and seemed beaten regardless.

Jacob — Paul Nicholls’ understudy to Ruby Walsh — will count himself unfortunate to be suspended throughout the Christmas and New Year holiday programme.

The dates of his suspension mean he will sit out December 20-22, 26-31 and January 1.

With Walsh likely to have commitments at Leopardstown, Jacob is likely to miss several lucrative opportunities for champion trainer Nicholls.

Jacob, incidentally, rode Nicholls’ Kauto Stone to victory in last month’s Down Royal Festival feature, the Champion Chase.

He was in line for the mount on Kauto Stone in the King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day.

Jacob may yet decide to appeal the decision.

Dream Function was a fortunate winner on her first start for trainer Colm Murphy at Clonmel yesterday.

The mare looked a smart novice hurdler for Philip Hobbs before pulling up at Newbury last November and was sent off a 6/1 chance on her fencing debut in the Kilsheelan Beginners Chase, which produced a race full of drama.

The Real Article crashed out early and then Cadspeed came down at the last with the race seemingly in safe keeping, leaving Dream Function to coast home 12 lengths clear of Mazuri Cowboy in the hands of Robbie Power.

Murphy said: “Robert said she hated the ground and that she'd be a nicer mare on better ground.

“She might go for a novice at Christmas time.”

Willie Mullins suffered an odds-on defeat when Fatcatinthehat was second in the opener.

Fatcatinthehat was sent off at 4/9 under Ruby Walsh but could not get past Crouching Harry after being produced with every chance at the last and Eoin Doyle's charge knuckled down to score.

Glens Melody and Ballycasey delivered in fine style for Mullins and his son Patrick later on the card however.

Mullins Jnr eased 1/8 chance Glens Melody into the lead coming to the last and she skipped clear to take victory. Ballycasey (4/6 favourite) was another effortless winner.

The jockey is on course to claim a record number of winners for an amateur in a calendar year.

He now needs six more victories to beat a record set by Billy Parkinson around 100 years ago.

Belfast Telegraph


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