Sport Horse Racing

Friday 15 December 2017

Powell suspended after dramatic finish

Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

BRENDAN POWELL, 17-year-old son and namesake of the former Grand National-winning jockey, and one of the weigh-room's rising stars, has been hit with a 14-day ban after taking the wrong course on clear leader Benny The Swinger in a handicap chase at Fakenham.

Having jumped the last fence at a notoriously tight track that has left Denis O'Regan, Sam Waley-Cohen and Sam Thomas in hot water for similar incidents, Powell failed to divert round the next obstacle in front of the stands.

As a result, he did not cross the finishing line on the 5/4 favourite.

And the drama did not quite end there as Roc De Guye, which looked sure to win after Powell's mistake, was nabbed on the line by the fast-finishing Peak Seasons.

Not surprisingly, the race provoked havoc with the in-running activity on betting exchanges, as Betfair reported £29,000 to have been matched on Benny The Swinger at the shortest price of 1.01 (1/100).

The exchange reported that £39 had been matched on Peak Seasons at the longest possible odds of 999/1, while Roc De Guye, incredibly, traded at both 999/1 and 1/100 within a matter of seconds, and still lost.

Meanwhile, Nigel Twiston-Davies was yesterday forced to scrap Imperial Commander's intended return to action in the Betfair-sponsored Grade One chase at Haydock on Saturday.

The 2010 Gold Cup winner has not run since being pulled up in last year's renewal of the Cheltenham showpiece, but his comeback is likely to be put on hold until the new year after he suffered a fracture to a hind splint bone.

On the home scene, Sunday's Troytown Chase card at Navan has attracted some fantastic entries, with the exciting Don Cossack pencilled in for its hurdling bow and Boston Bob and Alderwood among a potentially high-class line-up for the beginners' chase.

A total of 29 have been put forward for the Troytown, with Eric McNamara's Kerry National victor Faltering Fullback among the potential starters.

Following the cancellation of yesterday's scheduled card at Wexford, a replacement fixture has been announced for the south-east venue on Wednesday, December 5.

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