Rainfall key to Ruby run

  • Last Updated: February 6 2014, 11:47 GMT

Trainer Harry Fry is praying less rain than forecast falls at Doncaster so as to get another run into Rock On Ruby on Thursday.

Rock On Ruby: Run dependent on rainfall
Rock On Ruby: Run dependent on rainfall

The 2012 Champion Hurdle winner has only had one run over the bigger obstacles and his presence in the Eventmasters Corporate Hospitality Novices' Chase has scared off all bar one opponent, the useful but quirky Mr Mole from Paul Nicholls' yard.

However, due to the fact Rock On Ruby has had issues with his breathing in the past Fry will not risk his stable star on ground he feels is too soft.

"I'm just praying they don't get too much rain overnight," said the Dorset handler.

"They've had four dry days up there, unbelievably, and only had two millimetres of rain overnight, which is nothing. The ground is good to soft and obviously it depends what they get tonight.

"They are forecast up to 9mm and if they get that and it turns soft then we wouldn't go. But if they were to get less than five then we'd be making our way up.

"It's only a match but the horse comes first. The fact he only has one rival wouldn't affect our decision.

"I've been in regular contact with the clerk of the course Roderick Duncan and I will be overnight, I suspect. I hope it's third-time lucky that we get to run him at Doncaster having missed the first two.

"It's the best ground anywhere in the county but they've got gusting winds and that might help keep some of the rain off.

"Noel (Fehily) schooled him on Tuesday over some fences in case he does run and he jumped well, Noel was delighted with him.

"He's a popular horse so we want to do what is right by him."

Even if Rock On Ruby does not show up on Town Moor, there should still be another very interesting runner later on the card in the shape of First Mohican.

Now in the care of Alan King having been a Group-class performer on the level for the Cecils, he makes his hurdling debut in the eventmasters.co.uk Novices' Hurdle over an extended two miles.

King told his website www.alankingracing.co.uk: "I decided not to run him at Wincanton on heavy ground last week and always had this in the back of my mind for him.

"I am very happy with him - he is working well and enjoying his schooling and it is exciting to bring out a horse who showed a lot of quality on the Flat."

He faces a decent field including another former smart Flat performer in Nicky Henderson's Electrolyser, the John Ferguson-trained Retrieve, who was second in an Italian Group One to subsequent King George winner Novellist, and Donald McCain's Lyric Street.

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