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Ruby Walsh exclusive: I just hope Big Buck’s doesn’t finish second to Annie Power

Annie Power and Ruby Walsh face a World Hurdle smash-up with former champ and Ruby's old pal Big Buck's.

by Ruby Walsh | March 3, 2014

This wasn’t an easy decision to make. All the options had to be weighed up before we decided on a World Hurdle bid.

Option A was whether Annie Power would take on Hurricane Fly, The New One, My Tent or Yours and Our Conor in the Champion Hurdle over 2m or take on Big Buck’s and At Fishers Cross in the World Hurdle.

Take on four or take on two? We’ve gone for Option B.

It’s a big decision and I hope it’s the right one. No-one can be 100 per cent certain that she’ll stay the 3m until she’s run over the trip. But we’re as confident as we can be that she’ll stay.

I’d prefer if Big Buck’s didn’t finish second to us but if Annie Power doesn’t win than I hope Big Buck’s does. But that’s emotional -and you have to leave emotions out of these things.

Some people seem to forget that Annie Power has never won a Grade One over 2m.

The ground shouldn’t really matter to her. She wouldn’t want extremes – like heavy or quick – but neither will the rest of the field.

It’s decided now so we can just all start to look forward to the World Hurdle on March 13.



Obviously I’d prefer if Ballycasey hadn’t of tipped up when schooling at Leopardstown on Sunday. But he did and there’s nothing that can be done about it now.  If it was going to happen I’d prefer that it happened now rather than the RSA Chase next week.

The main thing was that he was fine afterwards, jumped the next perfectly and I popped him over a couple more and all was well.

Champagne Fever

I was very pleased with him and he’s going the right way. He’s on a hat-trick at Cheltenham having won the Champion Bumper and Supreme Novices’ Hurdle last year and next week’s Arkle is a very good race.

I’d have huge respect for Rock on Ruby. He’s a former Champion Hurdle winner and while he wasn’t impressive at Plumpton on his chasing debut he did it well at a tricky track like Doncaster. He’s a high-class horse and the hardest to beat in my eyes.


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