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Fehily fingers crossed for Cheltenham

Noel Fehily is eager to get back to work at Cheltenham this weekend after riding out two lots for Charlie Mann on Wednesday morning.

The rider has been sidelined since damaging his wrist in a fall at Newbury on November 26.

Although it was initially thought to be broken, Fehily was later relieved to hear his wrist was merely dislocated and he has made a speedy recovery since.

Fehily, who has been deputising for fellow casualty Ruby Walsh as Paul Nicholls' number one jockey, has a big weekend to look forward to with Silviniaco Conti in the StanJames.com International Hurdle and Master Minded in the Keith Prowse Hospitality Tingle Creek the pick of his possible mounts.

"It all went well this morning, I was very happy and I'm looking forward to getting back in action," he said.

"The wrist is in good shape, I'm going to ride out for Paul Nicholls tomorrow and we'll take it from there.

"It's all systems go and hopefully I'll be back at Cheltenham for maybe just one ride on Friday and then a few more on Saturday.

"Obviously there's some nice ones to look forward to at the weekend so it's been worth the work in getting back.

"I've only really missed the Saturday of the Hennessy meeting as the weather has been so bad, but that's been good for me as it's meant I haven't had to watch any of my possible rides winning!

"Fingers crossed, the weather improves and I'm eager to get back."

Aidan O'Brien will have to wait at least a week before finding out his punishment in relation to the Cape Blanco affair at York in May.

The Ballydoyle trainer was initially charged with "acting in a manner prejudicial to the conduct and/or good reputation of racing" after instructing his employee, Pat Keating, not to trot up the horse in front of the British Horseracing Authority's veterinary officer and the senior racecourse veterinary surgeon as part of their examination of the colt after his Dante success.

That charge was later amended, and O'Brien admitted to "acting in a manner prejudicial to the conduct of horse- racing in Great Britain" at a disciplinary panel hearing which concluded yesterday, as well as two other charges of encouraging and/or causing Keating to refuse to comply with two instructions given by the stewards.

Keating also admitted to being twice in breach of Rule (B)83 regarding his failure to comply with the instructions.

The BHA's disciplinary panel will consider the issue of penalties with an announcement anticipated next week.

At the time, O'Brien explained he had refused the request to submit the colt to a second veterinary inspection as he was worried Cape Blanco had suffered a recurrence of an injury and was being prepared for a flight home.


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