Gordon Elliott has hinted that Apple’s Jade could end her illustrious career with a run in the Stayers’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.
The multiple Grade One-winning mare had bounced back to form at Leopardstown over Christmas with an authoritative display and hopes were high as she headed into a clash with Benie Des Dieux in the Galmoy Hurdle at Gowran on Thursday.
However, despite adopting her usual front-running tactics, Apple’s Jade could never get away from her rivals and Davy Russell pulled her up before the second-last flight.
“Apple’s Jade never went at all,” said Elliott.
“Davy said the minute she put her foot on the track she was never going, but I’ve said all year that she was not working as well as last year.
“We’ll have a chat with Michael and Eddie (O’Leary) and I’d imagine if she goes anywhere it will be for the Stayers’ at Cheltenham and that could be her swan song if all goes well.
“She was very good in Leopardstown and she owes us nothing.”