Thursday 26 April 2018

Ruby Walsh awaits Wednesday verdict on length of his lay-off

Ruby Walsh. Photo: Reuters
Ruby Walsh. Photo: Reuters

Thomas Kelly

Ruby Walsh expects to discover on Wednesday how long he will be out of action for following his latest injury setback.

Walsh recovered from a broken leg just in time for the Cheltenham Festival, squeezing in two rides before the meeting kicked off.

He enjoyed two winners on the opening day of the showpiece fixture aboard Footpad and Benie Des Dieux, but fell from Al Boum Photo in the RSA Insurance Chase the following day and had to sit out the rest of the week after aggravating the leg he had broken in November.

"It's in plaster and I won't know until Wednesday how little or how much damage I have done," Walsh told Racing UK's Luck On Sunday programme.

"Hopefully I won't be out for too long but obviously there's a chance it could take a while, but I'll know more in the middle of next week. I don't feel too bad."

The undoubted highlight of his brief Festival was winning the Arkle on Willie Mullins' Footpad and, like everyone else, Walsh was impressed.

"How high he can go nobody knows. I suppose the time figure is down to the strong pace we went," said Walsh.

"There's talk he could end up a stayer but he's got a lot of speed. In saying that he did win over two-and-a-half miles in France, so stamina shouldn't be an issue.

"Bar the first (fence) down the back, all his jumping this season has been impeccable, he has a good cruising speed, a turn of foot and he has a lot of things going for him. Wherever he goes next year he'll have to step up as he'll be taking on Altior and Douvan or Might Bite and Native River."

Elsewhere, Monalee could head for the Growise Champion Novice Chase at Punchestown next month after his fine run at Cheltenham.

Henry de Bromhead's young stayer found only Presenting Percy too good in the RSA Chase as he tried to back up his victory in the Grade One Flogas Novice Chase at Leopardstown.

De Bromhead said: "We were obviously beaten by a very good horse, but it was obviously disappointing for me, although he ran a blinder.

"I don't know what Presenting Percy is going to do, but I'd imagine Punchestown is the obvious option for Monalee."

Meanwhile, Down Royal's abandoned meeting on Saturday has been rescheduled for today and track manager Mike Todd is confident the fixture will defeat the elements at the second attempt.

"We've had no snow. We were forecast snow flurries (on Sunday) but didn't get any," he said. "Our track was under water on Saturday, which is why we can to cancel, but we are now in good shape."

The outlook appears a little cloudier at Clonmel tomorrow as its card is subject to an 8am course inspection.

Irish Independent

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