Perth jockey Chris Parnham is fighting against time for a quick recovery to be fit to ride Extra Zero in the Group 2 $250,000 C.B. Cox Stakes (2100m) at Ascot on Saturday.
Parnham has been booked to ride the David Hayes and Tom Dabernig trained Extra Zero but will have to obtain a medical clearance after suffering a back injury in a race fall at Ascot on Wednesday.
Parnham was dislodged from his mount Classy Twister in an incident in the straight in the 0 – 64 Handicap (1600m) that also saw apprentice Jordan Turner fall heavily from Excellently.
Both riders were transported to the Royal Perth Hospital for further observation after Jordan received facial injuries and was experiencing back pain as was Parnham.
Parnham’s racing manager Dale Verhagen said that he was still a chance to ride on Saturday if he was cleared of any serious injury.
“Chris is still a chance to ride on Saturday if there are no risks,” Verhagen told The West Australian.
If Parnham is cleared to ride he will be teaming up with Extra Zero for the first time after Melbourne jockey Mark Zahra partnered the nine year old when seventh on a heavy track in the Group 1 $1m Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot a fortnight ago.
Hayes is expecting Extra Zero to perform better back on top of the ground this week in the weight for age C.B. Cox Stakes and the step up to 2100m will also be in his favour.
“He got the wrong conditions,” Hayes said.
“It was incredible to get a wet track in Perth in December.
“I think he can improve and 2100 is probably his ideal trip.”
The veteran galloper hasn’t visited the winner’s stall since January at the beginning of this year when he won a 2000m Flemington Open Handicap but his best effort to date was five starts later when he was beaten a nose by stablemate Spillway in the Group 1 $1m Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 14.
Extra Zero, who has drawn barrier ten in the eleven horse field, is listed as a $15 chance for the C.B. Cox Stakes with Ladbrokes.com.au who have local mare Delicacy the odds on favourite at $1.65.
Perth Cup winner Real Love is next in the market order at $4.80 ahead of Black Heart Bart at $11 and Balmont Girl at $12.
C.B. Cox Stakes market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $1.65 Delicacy, $4.80 Real Love, $11 Black Heart Bart, $12 Balmont Girl, $15 Extra Zero, $17 Dark Musket, $21 Tower Of Lonhro, $31 Kirov Boy, $67 Ask Me Nicely, $101 Bass Strait, Woodsville.
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