Ruby Walsh splits from Paul Nicholls partnership

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Top Irish jockey Ruby Walsh has announced that he will be ending one of jump racing's most successful partnerships by leaving the stable of English trainer Paul Nicholls.

Walsh has instead decided to concentrate on riding for Irish champion trainer Willie Mullins.

The jockey, who has two young daughters, has cited regular travelling to the UK from his native Ireland as one of the major reasons for the split.

Under Nicholls' watch Walsh partnered world stars such as Kauto Star, Denman and Big Buck's. The Englishman had been champion trainer for seven years running before Nicky Henderson took the crown this past year.

Nicholls has stated that Walsh will continue to ride for him when he is available to do so.

Walsh wrote in the Irish Examiner: "I started as Paul's stable jockey in October 2002, but when I chose to live in Ireland, this was always going to be a job that involved a lot of travelling."

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