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Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

Kempton shock as nine-year-old hurdler scores at 100-1 on Flat debut

Alex Hales: delighted to win with Isaac Bell
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Isaac Bell, a nine-year-old hurdler beset by 'leg issues', sprang a 100-1 shock on his belated Flat debut on Tuesday evening.

Those odds did not appear particularly generous in advance of the 1m4f maiden at Kempton, considering he had finished a modest sixth in a conditional jockeys' handicap hurdle at Market Rasen when last seen in January.

But he had won a bumper at Cork in his younger days and rewarded any punters who kept faith in him by scoring a neck victory under Luke Morris on his Flat debut.


100-1 charity runner to be sold at the end of the season


Trainer Alex Hales was not among those who backed him and he said: "He had done a nice piece of work last week but it was unrealistic to expect him to win.

"It is not easy to judge a nine-year-old maiden against fresh-legged three-year-olds."

Explaining the switch to the Flat, Hales said: "He has not quite fulfilled his potential over hurdles due to leg issues and we wanted to take the easier option of running him on the Flat to see if it was worth running him on the all-weather in the winter.

"Luke said he always thought he was going to be placed and he thinks he will get further. I would imagine another run on the Flat would seem wise."

Isaac Bell, who is owned by Steve Brown and David Raftery, won twice over hurdles in 2015 and Hales added: "I didn't have a penny on him today but fortunately the owners backed him and you don't need much on at 100-1.

"I'm delighted for them as they've been very patient with him."

The shocks did not end there on Tuesday night as Panther Soul struck at 50-1 in a maiden at Dundalk.


Full result and analysis

I didn't have a penny on him today but fortunately the owners backed him and you don't need much on at 100-1
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