Following Annie Power's redemption in the Champion Hurdle this afternoon, Ruby Walsh's voice became choked up with emotion in his post-race interview with Channel 4.
His voice wobbled audibly as he remembered another Annie back in Ireland who was watching the race. He didn't say any more on the topic.
There's a little Annie in Ireland watching this Annie and she'll be all-right too.
— Cormac Byrne (@cor_byrneindo) March 15, 2016
On today's edition of the Racket, Johnny Ward of the Racing Post provided further enlightenment. It transpires that the Annie to whom he referred is the daughter of a vet at Willie Mullins's stable who has cancer.
He spoke after the race of a little girl called Annie. It transpired that the little girl called Annie is a six-year old daughter of a vet at Willie Mullins's stable who has cancer.
Obviously, Willie and Ruby have been deeply affected by this. And anyone who watched it would have needed a heart of stone if one wasn't almost reduced to tears listening to Ruby.
Because he broke down mentioning this little girl and it put things into context. But it was an amazing, graceful act from Ruby after winning such a big race.
Graceful is the word.
— Laura O'Brien (@Laura_O_Brien) March 15, 2016