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Published: 11:08 | 28/9/16

Mullins loses Gigginstown horses


Gigginstown House Stud are to remove 60 horses from Willie Mullins' care following a disagreement over fees.

Mullins had trained the likes of Don Poli, Apple's Jade, Valseur Lido and Sir Des Champs for Gigginstown, which is backed by Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary, but the owners have decided to take their horses away from his Closutton base.

The horses were removed from the yard on Wednesday morning and it is unclear where they will be transferred to.

"Yes, we're parting company. I've just put up my fees for the first time in 10 years and Gigginstown chose not to remain," Mullins told At The Races.

"That's it. We're just parting company. I'm not willing to try and maintain the yard I have and the standards I have for... that's just the way it is.

"Everyone who comes into my yard is treated the same and that's it. I see enough people going to the wall all the time in Ireland and we're not prepared to sacrifice that.

"I'm happy to wrap it up at that. Somebody is going to get some fantastic horses. This has all come about in the last few hours and that's the way it is - that's all I'm prepared to say.

"They're hard horses to replace. Even with all the money in the world, you can't replace them. We put together a fantastic team, me and Michael O'Leary, but that's it - they are someone else's to train now."

Earlier this year, Gigginstown removed their horses from trainers Tony Martin and Sandra Hughes following a series of disappointing results.

In a statement to RTE, Gigginstown said: "As Gigginstown House Stud has been unable to reach agreement with Willie Mullins on an increase in training fees, we have agreed - with considerable regret - to move the Gigginstown horses to alternative trainers for the coming 2016-17 season.

"Gigginstown wishes to sincerely thank Willie and all the team at Closutton for the many Grade 1 races we have won together over the past seven years.

"We hope that an agreement can be reached at some time in the future which will allow Willie to resume buying and training more graded winners for us."

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