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Codd's title bid hit by 17-day Aintree suspension

Codd's title bid hit by 17-day Aintree suspension

 The Grade 2 Goffs Nickel Coin Mares’ Bumper, which brought day one of Aintree’s Grand National meeting to a close, has left a big question mark hanging over Jamie Codd’s bid to claim a third point-to-point riders title.

Successful in 2014 and 2016, the Wexford native only lost out to his fellow county man Barry O’Neill in the final race of their campaign at Ballingarry last June, and he was on-course to provide O’Neill with a stiff task to retain his title, trailing the reigning champion by just one winner heading into the final eight weekends of the season.
Codd was in action at Aintree on Thursday, partnering-up with Lemonfield point-to-point graduate Getaway Katie Mai in the concluder, however the one and a-quarter length victory aboard John Queally’s mare in the Grade 2 contest appears to have come at a cost, with the stewards handing him a hefty ban.
Whilst acknowledging in their report that the mare was found to have no abnormalities when examined after the race by a Veterinary Officer, the stewards handed Codd a 17-day suspension in addition to a £400 fine ‘for using his whip above the permitted level from the wings of the second-last’.
The true impact of the ban on his title chances will become clear when the dates they cover are announced, however it is sure to prove influential in what had been developing into a closely matched contest, for which northern bookmaker Franco Hughes had installed him as the 4/6 favourite to claim the overall title honours. 
Fellow title contender Derek O'Connor was another winning rider brought up in front of the Aintree stewards on Thursday, as he was suspended for a total of four days, having picked-up a brace of two-day suspensions.
The first of which was handed down 'for failing to obey the stewards instruction to attend a pre-race jockey's briefing, with the second for 'using his whip with excessive force' aboard Foxhunters winner Balnaslow.

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