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Timmy Murphy set for spell on the sidelines

By Keith Hamer

Timmy Murphy will start his enforced break a day early after being hurt in a stalls incident at Southwell.

The jockey, who is suspended from tomorrow until January 2, has given up his two rides at Kempton today as he damaged a foot when his mount Noblest became upset in the stalls ahead of the Fillies' Handicap.

His agent Simon Dodds said: "Noblest reared up in the stalls and caught his leg a bit. It's not bad but sore enough to make sure he doesn't ride at Kempton."

Though the Jamie Osborne-trained Noblest appeared well enough to take her chance, Murphy told the clerk of the scales she was never travelling throughout the race.

He considered the three-year-old had appeared to be sound both during and post-race, which was confirmed by the vet.

The vet reported that, on examination five minutes after the race, Noblest appeared to be sound at walk but she was lame on her left-hind at trot.

Murphy picked up a 14-day suspension on December 3 after Kempton stewards found he failed to take reasonable and permissible measures to obtain the best possible placing when fifth on the Osborne-trained Packing.

Balthazar King, meanwhile, is more likely to run in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase at the Cheltenham Festival than the Crabbie's Grand National after he made a welcome return to Philip Hobbs' yard yesterday.

The 11-year-old is back at Hobbs' Minehead stables after a long spell recuperating from an awful injury he sustained at Aintree in this year's National.

Balthazar King suffered broken ribs after being cannoned into by another horse when falling at the Canal Turn.

The trainer's wife, Sarah Hobbs, said: "The Cheltenham race is a conditions race this season, which will suit him.

"We might give him an entry in the National but after what happened I don't know if we'd be too keen on taking him back."

Belfast Telegraph


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