Apple's Jade Romps Home As Ruby Falls For Second Race In A Row

Apple's Jade showed how good a mare she is and put her hat into a another division for the Cheltenham Festival as she romped to victory by over 30 lengths in the Grade 1 Squared Financial Christmas Hurdle.

The 8/13 favourite cruised to the front from the start and made all of the race to land back to back Grade 1s in Ireland and really give her trainer a headache as to what race she should go in at the festival in March.

She won this race last year and extends her unbeaten run for the year to three races after picking up the Grade 1 Hatton's Grace at Fairyhouse for the third year in a row and the Grade 2 Lismullen Hurdle on her seasonal reappearance.

The win was emphatic but what made it easier for her was the only other horse in contention to catch her was the Willie Mullins trained superstar of yesteryear Faugheen who unfortunately fell under the ride of Ruby Walsh.

Faugheen seemed to be cruising just in behind the leader but a bad mistake with two fences left to jump saw the ex Champion Hurdle fall to the ground but both the jockey and the horse got up fine after it.

Apple's Jade has now three possible options at the Cheltenham Festival with the Mares Hurdle which she will be looking to win for a second time after having a disappointing season last term. She is best priced 7/4 to take that race.

She could feature in the Stayers Hurdle, a race that Gigginstown have never won and she is a best priced 14/1 to be entered into that contest and has just shown she can stay three miles. The Champion Hurdle could also be an unlikely option and she is 20/1 for that.

(Credit At The Races)

Ruby Walsh had his second fall within half an hour in what has been a bad day at the office for the Irish Champion Jockey Before falling on Faugheen he unfortunately fell at the last in the previous race.

With just one left to jump his ride, Bacardys was set to make a challenge but smacked into the fence and took a nasty fall, luckily both the jockey and the horse were fine.

This is not the first time that Walsh has fell at the last this year and it is starting to become a stigma that is being attached to the jockey after earlier in the season falling on Footpad and Saldier at the last fence at Naas.

Has Walsh lost his touch slightly? Watch the finish here.

(Credit At The Races)