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Elliott buys Grade One star Apple’s Jade for Bective Stud

Former hurdling star Apple’s Jade was sold for 530,000 euros at the Goffs December National Hunt Sale on Thursday.

The eight-year-old won 11 times at Grade One level for owners Gigginstown House Stud – twice when trained by Willie Mullins and on nine occasions after joining Gordon Elliott.

Her former handler bought the mare on behalf of Noel and Valerie Moran’s Bective Stud, with Apple’s Jade fetching a record price for National Hunt mare sold at public auction.

Her big-race haul includes the the 2017 Mares’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, the Irish Champion Hurdle and three consecutive victories in both the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle at Fairyhouse and the Frank Ward Memorial Hurdle at Leopardstown.

Connections confirmed her retirement from racing immediately after finishing eighth in last season’s Stayers’ Hurdle at Cheltenham – and in October revealed the great mare, who is in foal to leading stallion Walk In The Park, would be offered as lot 515 at Kildare Paddocks.

In all Apple’s Jade won 15 of her 28 starts and earned over £800,000 in win and place prize-money.

Apple’s Jade offered for sale

Former hurdling star Apple’s Jade will be offered for sale at the Goffs December National Hunt Sale.

The eight-year-old was an 11-time Grade One winner for Gigginstown House Stud before being retired in March following a disappointing effort when only eighth in the Stayers’ Hurdle at Cheltenham.

Apple’s Jade, who counts the 2017 Mares’ Hurdle at Cheltenham, the 2019 Irish Champion Hurdle and three consecutive wins in both the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle at Fairyhouse and Frank Ward Memorial Hurdle at Leopardstown among her successes, is in foal to Walk In The Park and will be offered as lot 515 on December 10 at Kildare Paddocks.

Gigginstown racing manager Eddie O’Leary said: “Apple’s Jade is a very special mare. She was the first mare ever to win 11 Grade One races, a feat now matched only by the great Enable, and we hope that she can mirror what she achieved on the track through her broodmare career.

“Gigginstown has never been about having a National Hunt breeding programme, which is why she will be offered for sale at Goffs in December. Apple’s Jade could be an ultimate blue hen for any serious National Hunt operation.”

Goffs Group chief executive Henry Beeby added: “It is an honour for Goffs to offer a mare of the calibre of Apple’s Jade. On behalf of all the Goffs team, I would like to thank Gigginstown House Stud for entrusting this exceptional mare to us, which is a wonderful endorsement of our December Sale.”