Walsh expects Faugheen response

Ruby Walsh feels a step back up in trip could see Faugheen return to winning ways after a surprise loss at Punchestown.

Faugheen finished second in the Morgiana Hurdle on Sunday having been the odds-on pre-race favourite, with Sharjah claiming the victory by seven-and-a-half lengths.

Walsh partnered the Willie Mullins-trained star at Punchestown and he feels the 10-year-old is still capable of challenging for the big prizes and admitted he potentially made some mistakes himself during the race.

He told Paddy Power News: “I set out on Faugheen doing what I thought was right on paper, but it didn’t work out. You can’t live your life in hindsight and you can’t change what’s gone by. You can only go forward.”

He added: “Faugheen had been showing plenty of spark at home and I thought there would be more of a turn of foot. Maybe Willie is right, maybe we did too much for the first mile of the race.

“I still think there’s plenty of life left in Faugheen, whether it be over 2m4f or 3m. His form is way better over three miles and that’s the way he rode on Sunday – like a horse who just wanted a trip. There’s lot of good races over three miles as well.”

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