Barry Geraghty cemented his place at the top of the jockey’s leader-board when Riverside Theatre did the business for actor Jimmy Nesbitt in the Ryanair Chase.
Earlier, the low fares airline’s boss Michael O’Leary was celebrating a win of his own when Sir Des Champs gave Ireland their third winner of the festival and got jockey Davy Russell off the mark in the process.
The highlight of the third day was Big Buck’s stunning fourth win in a row in the World Hurdle that saw Ruby Walsh move onto the two winner mark. Doing some serious damage to Paddy Power in the process.
“It’s been a dark day for us with a bad result in the opener with an Irish-trained horse (Sir Des Champs) and then Riverside Theatre was a very well-backed favourite,” Paddy said. “But the bogey result was Big Buck’s going off at 5-6 after being really well supported. This four-legged cash point machine who keeps on delivering, triggered a £3 million payout for Paddy Power. We are considerably down on the day, but somehow we have still got our noses ahead over the three days.”
And there’s more turbulence on the horizon on Friday with money back offers if your horse finishes second to the SP favourite in the Triumph Hurdle, County Hurdle and Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle.