Popular jockeys Ted Durcan and Hayley Turner double up at Great Yarmouth
Popular jockeys Ted Durcan and Hayley Turner completed doubles as sunny Great Yarmouth racecourse staged an eight-race card yesterday.
Durcan claimed a 53-1 double when taking the feature race on leading trainer Mark Tompkins' Comrade Bond. Tompkins, who trains at Newmarket, was recording his 30th success at the track since 2008.
Durcan kept the chestnut gelding on the far side while fancied Michael Foulger-owned duo Rough Rock and Spin Again went standside. Comrade Bond was all out at the finish but held on from First Class and Forks to land the spoils.
Foulger, deputy chairman of Norwich City Football Club, had favourite Rough Rock, a six-times winner at the track, and Spin Again, also a course winner, well beaten in the end.
At the previous meeting Charity Box had finished third to a Sir Henry Cecil winner Tickled Pink and the three-year-old returned for the seven-furlong handicap and under Durcan ran impressively to score for trainer Chris Wall at 5-1 second favourite.
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Charity Box took over with three furlongs to go and held on comfortably to win from Princess Maya and Love Grows Wild. Novelist Jilly Cooper, one of the owners of the third-placed horse, was present at the course but Love Grows Wild never looked like getting to the winner.
Turner is always the love of the East coast punters and she scored in a placepot-busting second race when she got Amosite up for Royston trainer John Jenkins.
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The 18-1 shot looked to be second favourite in a photo finish with the Mickael Barzalona ridden Mister Green, but got the verdict by a nose over the 16-1 shot with rank outsider Green Warrior third at 80-1.
Second at Lingfield a month earlier, Turner produced Amosite perfectly to steal the honours by the narrowest of margins and send her fans rushing to collect their cash.
The top lady jockey then kept fans waiting until the sixth race when she scored on 4-1 shot Laverre for Lucy Wadham, holding off the fast-finishing Silken Thoughts, on whom jockey Cathy Gannon had to switch to the outside, to complete the jockey's 94-1 double.
But biggest cheer of the day was for Kieren Fallon who got well-backed 15-8 favourite Multi Bene home in the fourth race. Multi Bene was hampered and squeezed for position when the stalls opened but Fallon stayed cool and eventually, having switched the favourite, forced the gelding home under a typical Fallon drive to win by half a length for trainer Tom Dascombe. Apprentice Nathan Alison, on runner-up Intomist, was judged to have caused the problems at the start and the stewards imposed a four-day ban on the five-pound claimer for careless riding.
Favourite backers had scored easily in the six-furlong opener when newcomer Rocky Ground, the 6-4 market leader, easily won by four lengths under Neil Callan, beating another debutant, A Certain Romance, owned by Queens Park Rangers footballer Joey Barton, trained by Peter Chapple-Hyam and ridden by Royal Ascot's in-form jockey William Buick.
In the penultimate race, over 10 furlongs, Educate looked to have learned much from his debut at Sandown in which he finished seventh, to cruise home at 100-30 under Tadhg O'Shea for trainer Ismail Mohammed's first Great Yarmouth success.
The final race saw a typical Jamie Spencer ride on Marhaba Malyoon from David Simcock's yard.
A complete outsider in the 2011 Derby, the bay gelding was dropped out by Spencer early on but overtook his six rivals to run out a comfortable three-length winner of the 14 furlong race at 7-1, having been backed down from 10-1.
The next meeting at the course is on Thursday, July 5, with the first race at 2.10pm.