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Wednesday 13 December 2017

Next big thing will be a trip to visit home!

DAVID MEDCALF

'I'LL BE BACK to see Mum and Dad in mid-summer,' promised Grand National winner Daryl Jacob on Monday this week, as he took a quick break from preparing horses at the yard of Paul Nicholls.

The 28-year-old, based in England for the past six years, has been an irregular visitor back home to the Enniscorthy area in recent times.

However, the man from Davidstown indicated that he might be in Ireland sooner than the summer if it turns out his services are required for the Punchestown National Hunt festival at the end of this month. In the mean time, he was given no time by boss Paul Nicholls to bask in the glory of his last stride win at Aintree.

The focus at work was not so much on Saturday's triumph as preparations for next weekend's big meeting at Ayr. Incidentally the Irishman is no longer responsible for Aintree winner Neptune Collonges, who has been retired from racing at the age of 11 after the excitement of the big meet in Liverpool.

Speaking on radio following his big win, Daryl told Ray Darcy that after visiting fellow jockey Noel Fehily in hospital, he was so late coming home to Wincanton on Saturday night that he went straight to bed. He also paid tribute to Ruby Walsh, leading jockey with Nicholls, for the advice he has passed on to his younger colleague.

Speaking to this newspaper, Saturday's top jockey paid tribute to neighbours Peter O'neill and Jack Murphy for their part in allowing him become a professional horseman. 'Peter put me up on a pony when I was very young. I met up with Jack Murphy through the Bree Hunt and he gave me my first job, at weekends and on holidays.'

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