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McNamara to leap into saddle as Preists bids for hat-trick

Andrew McNamara has come in for the ride on the hat-trick seeking Preists Leap in the Tendrleen Tyestes Chase at Gowran Park on January 21.

The Thomas O'Leary-trained 10-year-old has won the last two renewals, at 20/1 on both occasions, when ridden by Phillip Enright. However, Enright has stayed loyal to Robert Tyner's Footy Facts, a winner over hurdles on his latest start.

"Phillip Enright has told me that he is going to ride Footy Facts," said O'Leary. "It was his own choice and Robert (Tyner) didn't mind. He said that Robert Tyner is very good to him, he rides all his horses and that's why he's chosen to ride Footy Facts. Andrew McNamara will now ride Preists Leap."

Johnny Murtagh and Ryan Moore are among the jockeys invited to take part in the inaugural Meydan Masters competition on March 5.

The international jockeys' challenge will be staged at the new Meydan racecourse in Dubai with the winning riders of the world's 11 premier races of 2009 and one special invitee due to battle for the prize.

Moore and Murtagh will be joined by Dubai World Cup- winning rider Aaron Gryder, Kentucky Derby victor Calvin Borel, Japanese star Norihiro Yokoyama, Australian Corey Brown, Olivier Peslier and Zenyatta's rider Mike Smith.

Ahmed Ajtebi will also ride and the now-retired Mick Kinane would have also been able to take part after two qualifying wins on Sea The Stars. St Leger-winning rider Ted Durcan and Christophe Lemaire, who rode Le Havre to victory in the French Derby, will take the two vacant spaces. The Meydan Masters will be held over four support races on the programme that features the recently upgraded Zabeel Mile.

Doncaster's meeting on Wednesday is the latest to have been abandoned due to the weather, joining the scheduled action from Kelso for that day on the sidelines.


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