Racing: Fallon wins glory, Ryan gets the pain

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THERE ARE those who would deny jockeys the right to earn a few extra pounds with adverts on their breeches. You can only hope that some of them were among the thousands crammed onto the Knavesmire yesterday, when the Ebor Handicap brought more glory for Kieren Fallon, but only pain and injury for Willie Ryan, who was left prone on the turf by the two-furlong pole after a fall into the midst of the field just as it reached maximum speed.

Ryan suffered rib and suspected internal injuries when Street General clipped the heels of Dream Of Nurmi and came down. Theatreworld and Cash Asmussen could not avoid him, and they too hit the turf, Theatreworld trampling Ryan in process. Asmussen was able to walk away, but Ryan was taken by ambulance to York General Hospital. Last night, he was reported to be talking to the nursing staff and awaiting X-rays. He was detained overnight for observation.

How different was Fallon's experience on the Knavesmire yesterday, with victory in each of the three most important races on the card. This could only be good news too for Henry Cecil, who sent out both Catchascatchcan, in the Yorkshire Oaks, and Tuning, the winning favourite in the Ebor Handicap, although as a further reminder of the fine line jockeys tread, Cecil also saddled Street General.

By the sort of standards they like to set at Warren Place, this had not been an outstanding season for Cecil before yesterday. In Tuning and Catchascatchcan, however, he has two three-year-old fillies with a rewarding autumn before them, the only problem being the division of labour over the next couple of months. The Park Hill Stakes at Doncaster next month, the St Leger at the same meeting, and the Prix Vermeille are the obvious possibilities.

Yesterday's haul was a little over pounds 200,000, which still leaves Cecil a distant second to Godolphin in the trainers' championship. His personal satisfaction, though, will have been immense. Catchascatchcan was the first Yorkshire Oaks winner to carry Lord Howard de Walden's apricot colours, and the 85-year-old owner, one of Cecil's most loyal supporters, was there - complete with an apricot rose in his buttonhole - to greet her.

Better still was the victory of Tuning, who was backed down to 9-2 favourite for the Ebor and was never in any serious danger as Fallon steered a careful path around the Knavesmire. Those who backed Yorkshire - and yes, this next comment comes straight from the pocket - will feel that he would have gone close had his jockey not decided to start his run in Lancashire. In the end, though, Fallon and Tuning probably had a good deal more in reserve had it been required.

Cecil, in fact, implied afterwards that Tuning is every bit as good as Catchascatchcan. Should they ever come face to face on the racecourse - in the Arc, perhaps? - the opportunity to ride Fallon's reject would presumably fall to Willie Ryan. It is a possibility which can only speed his recovery.

Fallon's third major success in little more than an hour came aboard Josr Algarhoud in the Gimcrack Stakes. The champion jockey's strength in a finish is perhaps the characteristic which punters cherish most, but here he used more gentle persuasion as his mount tried to hang in behind Sailing Shoes. The Mick Channon-trained colt responded without any need for strong pressure and eased his way home, to complete a treble which offered final proof, if any were needed, that Fallon is a jockey who has it all.

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