FOR A BRIEF MOMENT yesterday, it looked as though all of Ruby Walsh’s hard work to be ready for next week’s Cheltenham Festival would be in vain.
Having spent four months sidelined with a broken leg, the Kildare man returned to the saddle last Friday at Newbury, easing himself back into action with a ride on the disappointing Don’t Turn Bach.
His preparations for next week’s Cheltenham Festival continued yesterday when he partnered King Of The Refs in the Tote Jackpot Maiden Hurdle at Naas.
The horse crashed out at the last, however, leaving Walsh needing two stitches to close up a small cut above his eye.
Speaking to RTE.ie earlier today, his sister and agent Jennifer confirmed that he would take the next two days off before resuming action on Saturday at Sandown.
He’s had two stitches, but he’s good and he’s going to ride on Saturday
The one horse he was due to ride today was a non-runner anyway and he’s not going to ride tomorrow either.
But he’s going over to ride in England on Saturday, he’ll be back in Ireland on Sunday and then over to Cheltenham on Tuesday.
In other Cheltenham news, trainer Philip Hobbs has revealed that Planet of Sound is a major doubt ahead of next Friday’s Cheltenham Gold Cup.
The horse, winner of last year’s Guinness Gold Cup at Punchestown, is currently suffering from an infection in one of his hind legs. Speaking yesterday, his trainer confirmed that he would not run in the festival showpiece unless 100% fit.
‘I’d say it’s very unlikely that he’ll run,’ said Hobbs.