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Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Noel Fehily eyeing weekend return after four months on the sidelines

Noel Fehily: returning to action at the weekend
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Noel Fehily is set to return to the saddle at the weekend – more than four months after a Punchestown fall from which he walked away believing he had escaped injury.

Fehily is due to ride hurdler Serosevsky in a handicap at either Newton Abbot on Saturday or Worcester on Sunday, depending on where trainer Harry Fry thinks the horse can best be placed.

The jockey said: "He's in two races over the weekend and I hope to ride wherever he runs. He won last time out at Newton Abbot and he looks a fairly safe conveyance.

"They've been putting me through my paces at Oaksey House, but I might just need my first race and so it's good of owner Brian Lambert to let me come back on him.

"We'll see how it goes, but it will be nice to get started again and then I can see what's coming up over the next few weeks and start tipping away."

Draconien and Noel Fehily lead over the last in the Champion Novice Hurdle at Punchestown in April

Fehily was riding the crest of a wave when injury struck, having ridden his fifth Grade 1 winner of 2018 just days earlier on Draconien for Willie Mullins, following earlier top-level wins on Summerville Boy (two), Monalee and Black Top.

He was riding the Oliver Sherwood-trained Got Away in a valuable handicap chase at the Punchestown festival when the five-year-old fell four from home.

Reflecting on the incident, and his long road back, he said: "First of all I got up and walked away, thinking everything was okay, but I soon realised something wasn't right and when I went to Naas hospital it emerged I'd fractured the C7 bone in my neck.

"I was in a neck brace for six to eight weeks and since then I've done a lot of work at Oaksey House, where Emma Edwards and Rob Travis have been especially helpful.

"I've been riding out at Harry's and at Neil Mulholland's for a couple of weeks, and I schooled quite a few for Neil last week to get my eye back in. I've also been riding out at home, and I'm feeling pretty good.

"It will be good to be back."

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I was in a neck brace for six to eight weeks and since then I've done a lot of work at Oaksey House. It will be good to be back
E.W. Terms
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