Sport Punchestown

Saturday 30 August 2014

Many happy returns await Ruby after dislocated arm

Ken Whelan

Published 29/04/2014 | 02:30

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Ruby Walsh returns this week to partner Hurricane Fly at Punchestown where the Willie Mullins trained mount will take on Cheltenham Champion Hurdle winner Jetski

The return of Ruby Walsh to the saddle after he dislocated his arm at an incident-packed Cheltenham Festival is eagerly anticipated by National Hunt fans nationwide, as is his partnership with Hurricane Fly who still remains the top Grade One hurdler of all time.

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The Fly will try to lower the JP McManus colours of the newly installed champion hurdler, Jezki, from the Jessica Harrington stable, in the World Series Hurdle on Friday, and sentiment will be 100pc behind the returning hero.

The man from Kill could have a dream comeback on the saddle given that he has the pick of Willie Mullins' horses, who will be contesting most of the 36 races down for decision this week.

Mullins' mares – Annie Power, who Walsh thought would have won at Cheltenham if he had waited a little longer, and the immaculate Quevega, who will surely keep her blemishless record – suggest that it will be the cause of many happy returns for Walsh this week.

And should the unlucky Mullins horse On His Own win the Punchestown Cup, surely it will be a case of job done for the returning champion in his quest for the leading jockey's title.

The meeting opens today with the Sean Breen Memorial – a race named after the Kildare priest who bestowed many a benediction on horses and faithful at racing festivals both here and in Britain.

And how appropriate it would be if the Enda Bolger-trained Zest for Life wins.

Blessings all round.

Indo Farming

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