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Ruby's National hopes in doubt after horror fall

Ruby Walsh will miss the Aintree Grand National and probably the rest of the season following yesterday's horror fall from Abbyssial in the Triumph Hurdle.

The Irish champion jockey could be ruled out for up to three months after suffering a serious arm injury.

Walsh was taken to hospital in Gloucester after walking away from the fall from Abbyssial in front of the stands, grimacing and clutching his right arm.

It is believed Willie Mullins' stable jockey has sustained a compound fracture of the humerus.

His father, Ted Walsh, said: "He has an injury high on his right arm."

Walsh's understudy with Mullins, Paul Townend, was also injured when Adriana Des Mottes was brought down in the same race.

Daryl Jacob faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines after his mount, Port Melon, crashed into a rail before the race, throwing the rider to the ground. Jacob broke a knee, leg and elbow.

Meanwhile, Tammys Hill will return to Newry to a hero's welcome after yesterday's thrilling victory over Ulster rival Carsonstown Boy in the Foxhunters Chase.

The finish to the Cheltenham Festival Foxhunters – the premier chase for amateur riders at the festival which follows the Gold Cup – was fought out by two Ulster owned and trained horses.

The brave Carsonstown Boy, trained at Crossgar by Colin Mc Bratney and owned by Jim Monaghan from Downpatrick, was at the head of affairs throughout and the 40/1 chance was still full of running and in the lead at the penultimate fence.

James Smyth on Tammys Hill – owned by his father Patrick – waited in mid-division for most of the race prior to moving off the rail just after the water jump to take a better position to challenge.

Four from home, Smyth had a look around before joining Carsonstown Boy in front and, after clearing the final fence, favourite On The Fringe with Nina Carberry aboard challenged Smyth.

He asked the local horse to give his all and soon went clear – galloping up the final hill to win by three lengths.

The Cheltenham Foxhunters winner is trained in Newry by Liam Lennon with his brother and assistant trainer Declan leading up the horse at the Festival fixture.

A very nonchalant Smyth said after his win: "He travelled brilliant the whole way and jumped perfectly. We have been trying to get him here for three years [ruled out the past two years due to minor ailments]."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph