first_imgWalsh gave the nine-year-old his head early in the race to take the lead and he would never give it up despite Sub Lieutenant closing the gap as the finishing line arrived.The 7/4 favourite was still tanking along coming down the hill and, despite having never won over as far over fences, kept up the gallop well.A couple more beautiful leaps up the home straight sealed victory with Walsh only having to keep the former Arkle winner up to his business to beat the 8/1 runner-up.Rank outsider Aso ran a superb race for Venetia Williams and Charlie Deutsch to finish third at 40/1.Walsh had won aboard Mullins’ Yorkhill in the opening JLT Novices’ Chase, and he said: “I was a passenger. I got him back at the first fence down the back, but he attacked and jumped and he stayed.”The jump at the last was special. He’s a cracking little horse and he’s so consistent, he must be a joy to own, he’s a little tiger. He wants soft ground at two miles which is why we went two and a half miles on better ground.”It’s been a tough year for Willie but he’s taken it great, I’ve worked for him since I was 17 so could eulogise about him all day.”Part-owner Colm O’Connell said: “It’s my birthday today, so this is wonderful”We’ve only got three horses with Willie. He’s the horse of a lifetime, defeat last year in the Queen Mother to Sprinter Sacre hurt, but we’re back with a bang now.”Ruby is a genius because he lets him do his own thing, he doesn’t panic. Our job is to pay the bills, they told us he’d stay and that was it. It all makes sense now.”Mullins said: “He was very keen, I was a little worried with his huge jump at the first but he got him settled. When he saw a line of fences he just went for them, but he sort of settled in front. For him, that’s settled.”He’s an absolute iron horse, he’s like that on the gallops every day, he wears his heart on his sleeve and I wonder how he can do it without wearing himself out.”He’s so hard on himself, so I’m trying to train him not to do that, this fellow has the button pressed the whole way, I don’t know how he keeps the energy and keeps wanting to do it.”Every time he needed a good jump he got one and I thought it would take something out of the others to catch him. He saved his best jump until last.””I was confident he’d stay, after the third-last I knew it was bar a fall, I was always confident he’d stay. Anyone horse who wins over two-four at Auteuil at four should have no problems here.”As for the King George I don’t know if you’d want him doing that over three miles. His owners certainly enjoy it, they all have their scarves and everyone in Cork has one.”last_img

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