Rebel Fitz in good nick following comeback run

Mick Winters reports Rebel Fitz to be A1 following his triumphant return from injury at Listowel on Saturday.

Rebel Fitz in good nick  following comeback run

While the County Cork trainer will continue to keep an eye on his popular nine-year-old over the next few days, the early indications are the gelding has suffered no recurrence of the injury that forced Winters to scrap plans to run him at the Galway Festival.

“We don’t seem to have symptoms whatsoever. We like just to wait a day or two before making a statement but he’s been out this morning. He’s cool, no heat or anything at this stage, so all is very good,” said Winters.

“The worry was he’d only been back three weeks and he had been swimming and on the treadmill, but he was the best horse in the race anyway.

“It would have been an anti-climax if he hadn’t been OK this morning. Thankfully he is and he has a ferocious following of people coming to see him at the races. It was great for the public and for us, of course.

“He’s tired and a bit quieter than he would be normally. There’s a hurdle race in Tipperary in a fortnight, the race he finished second to Captain Cee Bee (two years ago). It might be a bit near, we’ll see.

“If he went there he’d have a break after that. Then we’d send him back chasing.

“We had been thinking of the Kerry National but with the ground quickening up there, we thought we’d go for a race on the Flat so there would be no stress on landing after jumping a fence.”

Meanwhile Bryan Cooper is back riding out and could return to racecourse action in a few weeks following a horror fall at the Cheltenham Festival.

The retained jockey for the powerful Gigginstown House Stud operation suffered a complicated and excruciating multiple fracture of one of his legs in a fall from Clarcam in the Fred Winter Hurdle.

Dr Adrian McGoldrick, Turf Club chief medical officer, described the leg break at the time as “the worst fracture I have ever seen in a lower limb”.

Now, Cooper’s long period of rehabilitation is finally coming to an end.

Tom, his father and a successful trainer, said: “He’s getting there. He’s had huge improvement and started riding out last weekend. Hopefully a few weeks and he’ll be back in there.”

More in this section

Sport Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox