Today's racecards

Ruby Walsh has reaffirmed his intention to ride Hurricane Fly in the Stan James Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham next month.

Last Updated: 16/02/13 11:15am

  • Share:
Hurricane Fly: Walsh to stay loyal

Hurricane Fly: Walsh to stay loyal

Sky Bet

Ruby Walsh has reaffirmed his intention to ride Hurricane Fly in the Stan James Champion Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival next month.

Walsh had the option of partnering the Paul Nicholls-trained Zarkandar, but will instead pledge his loyalties towards the 2011 Champion hero, who has won his last four starts for Willie Mullins.

"I am definitely going to partner Hurricane Fly in the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham next month," he told the Irish Examiner.

"The alternative was obviously Zarkandar for Paul Nicholls.

"Earlier this week Paul asked me which one of them I intended to ride at the Festival.

"He posed a straight question and I gave him a straight answer - Hurricane Fly.

"It is getting quite close to Cheltenham now and Paul needed certainty."

Meanwhile, Walsh believes the extra distance of the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup could be the making of Sir Des Champs.

The leading rider is likely to partner the Nicholls-trained Silviniaco Conti in the Festival main event, but was particularly impressed by the Hennessy Gold Cup defeat of Flemenstar by Sir Des Champs over three miles.

He said: "I watched the Hennessy at Leopardstown from Newbury and formed the impression that the extra two furlongs of the Gold Cup are made for Sir Des Champs.

"Silviniaco Conti jumped and travelled great at Newbury, but did get tired.

"Paul assures me there will be buckets of improvement to come."

  • Share:

Related

Related Profiles

Most Popular

Features

Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day

Fancy a flutter on the racing? Let Sky Sports News' Alex Hammond mark your card every day.

Saturday's Tips

Saturday's Tips

Anita Chambers provides a tip for every race on Saturday with Go Far her selection for the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup.

Catching Pigeons

Catching Pigeons

Our weekly Catching Pigeons column brings us the inside line from the major training centres around the country.