Walsh defends Twiston-Davies' Buck's ride

Updated: Tuesday, 28 Jan 2014 15:03

Ruby Walsh has admitted he would not have ridden Big Buck's any differently in last Saturday's Cleeve Hurdle.

Sam Twiston-Davies was aboard Paul Nicholls' star stayer for the first time at Cheltenham and the jockey came in for criticism in some quarters after taking up the running a mile from home.

However, Walsh, who was unbeaten over hurdles on the 11-year-old, wrote in his paddypower.com blog that he would have adopted similar tactics.

"Things didn't go according to script for Big Buck's comeback but to my eyes he got beaten because of race rustiness. He hadn't run in 14 months and if you stopped the race a few strides after the last you'd think he was all over the winner.

"He doesn't appear to have lost any of his old sparkle and looked like he was going to pull away up the hill," said Walsh.

"I know that Knockara Beau (66-1) winning does dent the form but this trial has thrown up more questions than answers.

"Sam Twiston-Davies may have wanted to ride Big Buck's differently in hindsight. But when you get beat you always do.

"I don't think I would have ridden him any differently. He was fit, he never stopped before and he'll improve for the run. Paul Nicholls has stated he's still the one to beat and he knows him best.

"Boston Bob was a little disappointing (finished last)but I haven't spoken to Barry (Geraghty) or Willie (Mullins) yet to see where he might go next."

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