Olly Murphy: Hunters Call likely to go straight to Cheltenham

Olly sends Rio Quinto to Warwick this weekend
Olly sends Rio Quinto to Warwick this weekend
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Betfair Ambassador Olly Murphy reviews a fantastic three-timer on New Year's Day and looks ahead to his entries this weekend...

My Christmas couldn't have started any better with Hunters Call winning the Grade 3 handicap hurdle at Ascot; he was given a fantastic ride by Jack Kennedy and the day was a complete dream. I'm still pinching myself now. He has been raised 9lb by the handicapper which I suppose is fair enough. He'll have an entry in the Betfair Hurdle but it isn't easy to win two big handicaps, let alone three, so is likely to go straight to Cheltenham.

New Year's Day was an equally special way to start off 2018 with the yard having three winners, a fantastic achievement. Knockgraffon got the ball rolling up in Musselburgh winning the feature chase on ITV. He was given a very good ride by Brian Hughes and the step up in trip seemed to do the trick. I was delighted for Barbara Hester who is a big supporter of the yard.

More Than Luck then won at Fakenham where he got up in the shadow of the post under a strong ride from David England who is a big part of my team at Warren Chase. He is owned by Tommy Elphick and his friends so it was a great day for Tommy as Aston Villa went on to win as well, and they kept a clean sheet!

My third winner of the day was Mullaghboy, who was also given a very good ride by Charlie Poste as he is far from straightforward. He jumped badly on his first outing over fences and since then, an awful lot of work has been put in to his jumping by Charlie at home which has paid dividends.

This Week's Runners

To date, I haven't had a runner since New Year's Day, and my next runners won't be until the weekend.

Rio Quinto will have an entry in the Grade 2 at Warwick on Saturday and also Kelso on Sunday. He's a horse that is improving, he's a strong stayer and I will be very interested to see him contest a nice race at Warwick if it looks suitable.

A horse having his first run for me, Wishfull Dreaming, will have an entry in the Lanzarote Hurdle at Kempton and he will also have an entry at Kelso too. He is in good form and his work has been very good. His first run is often his best run so I'm quite keen to contest a nice race first time out. He wouldn't want the ground too soft and I'm really looking forward to running him.

I've some lovely horses to run in the next month or so, none more so than a horse called Brewin 'upastorm. His work has been very good, he is a lovely horse for next year when he will go jumping, but he will start off in a bumper somewhere in the next fortnight, all being well.

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