Fusil Raffles took advantage of the fall at the last third fence of Shan Blue to land on the second tier Charlie Hall Chase in Wetherby in a dramatic fashion.

Shane Bleu and Harry Skelton grabbed the lead around the turn from favorite Cyrname – later pulled – but then had a major fall when he moved 15 miles off the field.

That left Fossil Raffles in front, a position that would have held up Daryl Jacob’s streak, ahead of Kitty Light for Jack Tudor and Klondau Castle under Johnny Burke.

Chan Bleu running in the Weatherby
Chan Bleu running in the Weatherby

Shane Bleu and Harry Skelton were unharmed, as the horse was cut to 1/10 with King George Chase’s Sky Bet at Kempton despite late fall.

Six-year-old Nikki Henderson’s victory gave Jacob a second-tier double that day, having earlier landed in the 365 Hurdle bet on Indefatigable.

Speaking after the race, Shan Bleu coach Dan Skelton said: “The horse is OK, Harry’s OK. Good jumpers, when they fall, they have a bad fall. He wasn’t very nice but he’s OK, he broke.”

Fusil Raffles kicks off this weekend at Charlie Hall Chase in Wetherby
Fossil Raffles runs at Weatherby

“The fence is in the wrong place, what can you do? It happened to Robbie Walsh. These things happen. I was happy with him, and we know he’s a very, very good horse.

“He’s in Hennessy and he’s going to have an entry in King George. We’ll just have to see, but he was so frustrated.

“Everyone’s fine, it’s just a race. One minute you win a two-mile race with Molly O’Lee’s Wishes, the next minute it happens.

“You can’t think of it, the horse is fine, we know it’s a good horse. We miss a cup today, but at least we don’t miss a horse.”

Winning rider Daryl Jacob admitted he was a lucky winner, saying: “He (Chan Bleu) raced back from home and I thought he’d go unless he didn’t stay, so at that point I rode the race to finish second.

“Unfortunately Harry’s horse has fallen three times and I can tell you it’s been a long way to the winning streak.” I have no doubts about him (Fossil Raffles), he gets the ride pretty well but I need to teach him the discipline of coming back and relaxing under the bridle rather than going forward in the bridle.


“(It was) unfortunate circumstances, I thought the winner would have flown unless he didn’t stay, but I thought I was very proud of the horse, and I think he would have learned a lot from today’s experience.

“He used to attack his ramparts, go on a shorter ride, whereas the pace of the race today was a little slower. He got a little stuck in him towards the end of the race. He is so excited, he looks deep for you when he has to.”

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