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

Trainer pays €530,000 for former inmate.

FORMER HURDLING CHAMPION Apple’s Jade was sold for  €530,000 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.

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