Ruby Walsh reveals horse racing rule that makes it a nightmare for jockeys

He's got a point has our Ruby.

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Regret was one of the many bases covered on our latest From The Horse’s Mouth Punters’ Panel episode, as the loyal listeners quizzed our resident jockey-turned-pundit Ruby Walsh about rides he’d like to have another go at.

As the chat between the lads developed, Ruby, who regularly had to pick between mounts for Paul Nicholls and Willie Mullins, admitted there were times he would go to post and realise he had backed the wrong horse – especially with 48-hour declarations making it even harder to judge!

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He said: “Every time you finish second you’re always wondering what you could have done differently. I think a lot of the rides I’d love another go at but I picked the wrong one, it’s as simple as that. They are endless. I could list any one of 50 where you question what you did but part of being a sportsperson is moving on and learning from the mistakes but you had to park them because you had another ride 20 minutes later.

“There were lots of decisions regards riding the wrong horse that I’d love to do again like Bellshill instead of Al Boum Photo in the Gold Cup. I sat down and looked at the figures and the ratings, he ran to 172 or 173 at Tramore when I won on him on New Year’s Day. Bellshill had never ran to that rating yet I still rode Bellshill over Al Boum Photo in the Gold Cup so it was staring me in the face.

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“There’s lots of times you look back with hindsight and think ‘how did I do that?’ but a lot of the ones I’d love to change are more riding the wrong horse.

That’s where 48-hour declarations really bug me as a jockey.

“You’d be committed to one at 48 hours and there would be rain forecast, the forecast would change, rain wouldn’t come or there would be no rain forecast and the rain would come and by 10 o’clock the following morning you’re on the wrong one.

“It bucketed it down when I was on Pique Sous in the Galway Hurdle. The Tuesday night it started to rain which wasn’t forecast and by Wednesday morning he had no chance but he was the one I was on. I think he jumped five hurdles before he pulled up.

“I know 48-hour declarations suit a lot of people but they never suited me as a jockey because you were committing to something you couldn’t change too far out. That’s life, I suppose.”

If you’d like the chance to speak to Ruby, Paddy or Frank and appear on the show, just drop us a line on [email protected] to let us know you’re interested and we’ll be in touch. Easy peasy. Oh, and if you’re not already a subscriber to From The Horse’s Mouth, you can remedy that HERE.

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