Talking Horses: Sammy Jo Bell sees off Kieren Fallon in Legends event

Six-times champion Fallon rides Kilbaha Lady at Doncaster but is beaten by the youngest rider aboard Dubai Acclaim

For a few strides Kieren Fallon looked to be travelling as well as any jockey in the field as he made a brief return to race-riding in the Legends event at Doncaster on Wednesday, settled just behind the leaders on a horse with plenty of stamina. When he asked Kilbaha Lady to quicken, however, the six-times champion jockey got little response as Sammy Jo Bell, the youngest rider in the race, held on to win on Dubai Acclaim as Hammer Gun and Noel Fehily, who retired from jumps racing only a few months ago, tried desperately to chase her down.

Bell’s finest day as a jockey came in 2015 when, as a late replacement for Cathy Gannon at Ascot’s Shergar Cup, she rode two winners on the afternoon to claim the prize as the Cup’s top rider. Bell was still an apprentice at the time and seemed destined for a rewarding career in the saddle but she was sidelined for 10 months from May 2016 after fracturing her pelvis in a fall and finally handed in her licence in February 2018.

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