Racing: Dobbin is lost in the country
Saturday 14 November 1998
Dobbin appeared to have done the hard bit on McGregor The Third, safely negotiating the first circuit with no pathfinder to show him the way. But then, as the race hotted up and the pack closed, the young Ulsterman's compass went potty. He could have blamed McGregor, who has won this race twice before, and should therefore have been relied on to find his own way round.
On this occasion though the old horse went swerving to the outside of the main bunch and towards one avenue before his jockey realised everyone else was funnelling down another. By the time Dobbin had corrected his navigational error the field had gone. He recovered but could finish only fifth behind an Irish clean sweep led by Linden's Lotto and returned with a face as long as the race. The stewards punished the rider with a seven- day ban, which will come into force at the end of the month.
More consistently unreliable is Green Green Desert, who has been called more names than Elizabeth Taylor. However, the old scoundrel showed that talent is still mixing with waywardness inside his seven-year-old body yesterday in a handicap chase.
This itinerant racehorse, who has competed with distinction on the Flat and is now with Paul Nicholls after beginning his jumping career at Oliver Sherwood's yard, skipped pleasingly around two miles of the old course. He did not come under pressure at any stage, which was perhaps the key to his victory.
"Everything you read in the papers told you this horse had no chance," Nicholls said, "but the work he has done at home suggested he would win. I have been using him to lead the babies and he has settled in well."
n Adrian Maguire has decided not to appeal against the three-day suspension which he collected at Kelso on Wednesday for using his whip with excessive frequency.
Latest in Sport
Cristiano Ronaldo buys agent Jorge Mendes a whole Greek island as a wedding present
Premier League 2015/16 preview: Club-by-club guide to the new season
Pedro to Manchester United: Louis van Gaal says £22m winger can turn Manchester United into champions
Can Arsenal win the Premier League? Is Raheem Sterling the answer to Man City's problems? Can anything stop Chelsea?
Pedro to Manchester United latest: Pep Guardiola backs his Barcelona protege to shine at Old Trafford
- 2 Dutch King Willem-Alexander declares the end of the welfare state
- 4 Giant Minion terrorises drivers in Ireland as 40ft inflatable blocks busy Dublin road
- 5 'Cool kids' can go on to become losers in later life, study finds
Is Britain really full up? Are migrants taking our jobs? Leading academic answers the most common anti-immigration claims
Calais Migrant Crisis: Deputy Mayor of Calais labels Cameron's use of 'swarm' as 'racist' and 'ignorant'
Chris Leslie: Jeremy Corbyn's anti-austerity agenda will harm the poor, says Labour shadow Chancellor
Landlords renting properties to illegal immigrants to face up to five years in prison
While we fixate on Calais, the Home Office is quietly deporting dozens of migrants on 'ghost flights'
Calais crisis: The seven claims made about the migrants - and the reality
£20,781 to £24,057 per annum: East15 Acting School: The post involves general ...
£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: ACS qualified Domestic Gas Brea...
£16250 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Product Packager / Stock Assistant is ...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Garden Centre complex base...