Friday, 1 December 2017

Cheltenham Festival 2006: Nicholls and Walsh Dominate

Ruby Walsh topped and tailed the week with a winner, making up fully 7 lengths on the run-in to win the opening Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle on Noland, but having to work much less hard on Desert Quest, who drew clear for an impressive 2½-length win in the closing Vincent O’Brien County Hurdle. In between, the Irishman also took the William Hill Trophy Handicap Chase on Dun Doire, trained by Tony Martin, and three winners were sufficient to make him leading jockey at the Cheltenham Festival for the second time.

Along with Noland and Desert Quest, Paul Nicholls also saddled Star De Mohaison, ridden by Barry Geraghty, to win the Royal & SunAlliance Chase and picked up a second trainers’ title.

Other notable winners during the week were Brave Inca in the Champion Hurdle, Newmill in the Queen Mother Champion Chase, Hairy Molly, who sprang a 33/1 surprise in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper, My Way De Solzen in the Ladbrokes World Hurdle and War Of Attrition in the Totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup. All bar My Way De Solzen, who was trained in Wiltshire by Alan King, were trained in Ireland and contributed to a record-breaking nine wins at the Cheltenham Festival for Irish trainers.

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