Apple’s Jade’s below par effort in the Champion Hurdle, was followed by a dirty scope, it has emerged.
Having cut out the early pace, she quickly faded from contention and Eddie O’Leary, Gigginstown House Stud’s racing manager, revealed:
“She scoped dirty after the race. We know she’s a lot better than that and, given she scoped rotten afterwards, that’s enough of a reason to say she didn’t run up to scratch.
“We’re not looking for any excuses but the fact is she was in season last year and scoped dirty this year.
“Maybe she’s not mad about travelling. We knew the writing was on the wall a long way from home as she was beaten passing the stands on the first circuit. It wasn’t the real Apple’s Jade.”