Ruby Walsh on his biggest Cheltenham race regret

Leading jockey speaks to Off The Ball on eve of 2017 festival

Ruby Walsh, Cheltenham

Ruby Walsh ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

Ruby Walsh says the 2002 Gold Cup at Cheltenham is the festival race that hurts him most.

Speaking to Off The Ball, the multiple-time Cheltenham leading jockey rode Commanche Court that day but finished behind Best Mate.

"I could tell you the [races] that I'm not happy with," said Walsh, before revealing that the one that hurts him the most is Commanche Court  "all day every day".

"It was the Gold Cup, it was a tactical error. With experience, if I was riding him now, he'd have won.

"[I] went too soon, moved in down the hill, didn't close the door.

"You have to learn by mistakes. It was a costly error in a Gold Cup. There's loads of races you'd love to ride again. I'd love to be riding Annie Power down to the last hurdle in the Mares Hurdle again but unfortunately that wasn't my fault. She let fly. Would I do something different if I thought she was going to do that? Of course I would but I didn't think she was going to do that.

"Whereas Commanche Court in the Gold Cup was a deliberate action on my behalf. It was a deliberate manoeuvre. It was something I got most definitely wrong." 

In terms of the Cheltenham performances he is most proud of, a few jumped to mind.

"I loved Annie Power last year. I was delighted with that. Also Champagne Fever in the Supreme and Final Approach in the County Hurdle. They were good ones," he said. 

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