/ Racing

Ruby Walsh: Annie Power can go the distance

Updated: Tuesday, 04 Mar 2014 07:43 | Comments

Ruby Walsh rides the unbeaten Annie Power
Ruby Walsh rides the unbeaten Annie Power

Ruby Walsh is confident the step up to three miles will not be a problem for Annie Power when she tackles the Ladbrokes World Hurdle at Cheltenham next week.

The potential Festival target of Willie Mullins' unbeaten mare has been the subject of much debate in recent weeks, with the Champion Hurdle over two miles, the OLBG Mares' Hurdle over two and a half and the three-mile World Hurdle all considered.

The champion trainer finally confirmed on Sunday his six-year-old would step up in distance at Cheltenham, and Walsh feels connections have made the right call.

He said: "I think she will stay. Her pedigree is all stamina. She's out of an Old Vic mare and she's by Shirocco.

"The further she goes, the more it'll suit her, but you can't really be certain until she goes and does it.

"She's never run over three miles, but things had to be considered and that's where we feel she has her best chance.

"Willie has asked my opinion and everything had to be weighed up and we all felt it is the right race for her.

"There are four or five outstanding horses in the Champion Hurdle and maybe two, possibly three, in the World Hurdle."

Walsh partnered Big Buck's in each of his four World Hurdle triumphs and was successful on 18 of the 19 times he rode the 11-year-old.

"He's a hell of a good horse and he'll be very hard to beat," Walsh told Racing UK.

"I've had 10 months to come to terms that I wouldn't be riding him so I've put that out of my mind."

User contributions and/or comments do not, unless specifically stated, represent the views of RTÉ.ie or RTÉ.
Click here for Terms of use