By Josh Powell | Grand National 2013
Sibling rivalry is nothing new. At one end of the extreme scale, a lot of it is plastered across the Jeremy Kyle Show each morning, at the other end brother and sister go head-to-head on horse racing’s biggest stage.
Ruby Walsh looks set to ride On His Own, the 15/2 favourite for the Grand National trained by Willie Mullins. His sister Katy Walsh will keep the ride on Seabass who came third in last year’s race and is owned by Dad Ted Walsh. Seabass isn’t far behind in the betting at 9/1.
Ted, who spends most race meetings tirelessly entertaining us on the television with his witty banter and complete disregard for the watershed, also runs the well-backed 11/1 shot Colbert Station, who will be ridden by Champion jockey AP McCoy.
The big race could result in some of the Walsh family members receiving some pretty crap Christmas presents this year with all three horses in with a good chance. Paddy Power had his lucky pants pulled down by Ruby when he guided Hurricane Fly to victory at Cheltenham and the boss is in danger of it happening again this weekend. There’s nothing he enjoys more than flying into the face of caution so he has priced up a hole host of Ruby specials for the national.
Walsh family specials
4/1 Either Ruby Walsh or Katie Walsh to ride the winner
8/1 Both Ruby Walsh and Katie Walsh to place
33/1 A Ruby and Katie Walsh one-two in any order
8/11 On His Own to beat Seabass in a match bet
Evens Seabass to beat On His Own in a match bet
Ruby isn’t bothered by the fact it might come down to a straight battle between him and his younger sister. If it comes down to a battle to the post between On His Own and Seabass, he guarantees that there will be no holding back between the competitive pair.
‘A Walsh one-two would be great but it is not something I want to think about. It would be very simple for punters if the first and second favourite came in anyway. Seabass ran a great race last year, On His Own tipped up but they have two live chances.’
‘The National is the National. Winning is a fairy-tale but the results often aren’t.’
‘If, for some reason, On His Own doesn’t win I would love Katie and Seabass to win. For her, for lady riders, for the race itself, it is the dream result. It would be a very special day for her. She is more than capable and more than deserves her chance.’
‘It would be a dream result but unfortunately I’m a professional and there is no quarter given. I beat a horse of Dad’s in an Irish National eight years ago but that is part and parcel of racing.’
‘I would be delighted for my father and sister if they won and they would be delighted for me. We are sporting people.’
There would be one hell of a party in the Walsh household if On His Own, Seabass and Colbert Station take up the first three places in this year’s National. Paddy Power will be hoping for an invitation as the Walsh family are set to help punters clean him out for the second time in four weeks.