Jockey Davy Russell is facing a spell on the sides after suffering a neck fracture in a fall on Sunday at Limerick.
On Monday, Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB) Senior Medical Officer, Dr. Jennifer Pugh confirmed the rider suffered a fracture to his C6 vertebrae.
🗣️ Update from @ihrb_ie Senior Medical Officer, Dr. Jennifer Pugh
"Davy Russell sustained a neck injury yesterday and has a fracture of his C6 vertebrae and Jack Kennedy fractured his left collarbone. Unfortunately they will both be out for a number of weeks." pic.twitter.com/wFhycthSWJ
— IHRB (@ihrb_ie) October 12, 2020
Cheltenham Gold Cup and Grand National-winning jockey Russell was taken to hospital for precautionary X-rays on a suspected shoulder injury after a heavy fall from Doctor Duffy early in the Munster National on Sunday.
The injury will rule the rider out for "several weeks." It will be a huge disappointment for Russell who took time out during the summer to allow a back injury to heal to prepare for the upcoming winter jumps season.
Russell was looking forward to reuniting with the likes of Envoi Allen among others as Gordon Elliott's big-name horses begin to get their seasons underway.
Double injury blow
It was a double injury blow for Gordon Elliott on Sunday, who will be without his two main jockeys as Jack Kennedy also suffered an injury on the day.
Kennedy, who only recently returned from a broken leg suffered at the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown in February, fell three hurdles from home when partnering Etincelle Lioterie in the opening Listed novice hurdle at Limerick.
Speaking to Racing TV at Kilbeggan on Monday afternoon, Elliott suggested the injury to Kennedy is not too serious. "It's the return of an old injury, just a hairline fracture on his collarbone.
"If he works hard we hope he can be back for Down Royal [on Halloween weekend]."
Elliott was speaking after another three winners on the final card of the year at Kilbeggan where he suggested there will be plenty of opportunities for other riders in the absence of Kennedy and Russell.
"Keith Donoghue is in every day and is in charge of all of our schooling, so he can ride any of our horses. There are lots of lads coming in every day too," the trainer said.
Elliott has already used 27 different jockeys this national hunt season, 14 of those jockeys have ridden at least one winner for the Cullentra trainer. there will be plenty more opportunities with Russell and Kenndy on the sidelines and Robbie Power relocating to the UK.