Ruby Walsh: Princess Zoe win sparked first cheer I’ve heard at an Irish course since lockdown

Princess Zoe's victory in France brought plenty of joy back home

Ruby Walsh


Ruby Walsh says Princess Zoe’s fairytale victory in the Prix du Cadran at Longchamp on Saturday was greeted by huge celebrations back home in Ireland.

The Tony Mullins-trained five-year-old continued her remarkable rise to the top with a fifth consecutive win as apprentice jockey Joey Sheridan timed their challenge to perfection in the gruelling two-and-a-half mile contest on soft ground.

Princess Zoe had an official rating of just 64 on her first outing for Mullins back in June but has now shot up to a rating of 109 after her debut Group 1 success.

Speaking on the latest episode of Paddy Power’s From The Horse’s Mouth podcast, Ruby revealed how the mare was roared home by those watching the race at Gowran Park in Ireland, creating an atmosphere unheard of since racing moved behind closed doors.

Read More: Ruby Walsh and Paddy Power on why Enable failed to challenge Sottsass in the Arc

RUBY WALSH: Tony Mullins will be making the most of this one, and it was brilliant for him. He said to me in Galway, before she won for the second time at the festival, that they were going for the Prix du Cadran.

I was thinking ‘maybe they need another 30lb to improve’ but she won twice at the Galway Festival then she went and beat Barrington Court in the Oyster Stakes.

Joey Sheridan was brilliant on her. I thought it was great planning, and tactically a brilliant ride. There was so much to like about it.

I was at Gowran Park on Saturday and it was the first cheer I’ve heard at an Irish racecourse since racing resumed. Horses are winning there every day but there’s no cheering and no clapping, then on Saturday the 35 or 40 people that were there were scattered around the betting ring roaring at the televisions.

It was great to see an atmosphere at a racecourse, even if they were shouting for Longchamp! It was an incredibly popular winner and she’s a very good mare.

It was brilliant for everybody, and brilliant performances from all those involved.

Our main main Paddy Power is also delighted for Mullins and was particularly impressed with 18-year-old Sheridan after a mature ride on an unfamiliar track.

Paddy Power: This is an incredible story. It was a great performance by the horse, and a great training performance.

But also, for Joey Sheridan to spot the race – nobody else reacted as quickly as he did to chase Alkuin when he went for it.

He was the first, and only one really, to react quickly enough to go after it and give himself a chance of winning the race.

He just got there in time and it was really astute by the jockey, and I love the way that they didn’t go for a local jockey. The temptation must have been massive to book one of the French jockeys rather than Joey Sheridan, but I love the way that he’s had his chance now to go and win a big one.

Everything about it was lovely to watch, and we were roaring at the telly! It was a lovely moment.

Of course you wish the crowd was there, because everyone would have been loving that. All the connections were hugging and kissing in the parade ring.

Read More:

Get over to for all the latest racing odds


What do you think?