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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Hurricane blows away rivalsHeadlines
Hurricane Fly is clear at the final flight

Willie Mullins hailed Hurricane Fly as back to his very best as recorded his third successive win in the BHP Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown in most impressive fashion.

The nine-year-old (1-6 favourite) never came off the bridle in registering his 14th Grade One success, setting himself up perfectly for his bid to regain the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham.

Thousand Stars made it a decent gallop in atrocious weather, but when Ruby Walsh made his move rounding the home turn he soon skipped well clear, before easing over the line with a five-length advantage. His stablemate held Binocular, who travelled well for a long way, by a nose for second.

Mullins said: "He's well used to these conditions and he flies through that ground, so everything went according to plan. We didn't know what One Cool Shabra was going to do, but we weren't going to be hanging around with either horse (Hurricane Fly and Thousand Stars) if there was no pace.

"When you look at the race it was a tip-top race. Binocular has won a Champion Hurdle, Thousand Stars has won two French Champion Hurdles and Captain Cee Bee won a Supreme.

"Everything had gone 100% in his preparation. Ruby said he's as good as he ever saw him. He gave him a squeeze turning off the last bend and said it was just like he had jumped in. He took off like he was on summer ground and I just hope to keep him in that form over the next six or seven weeks.

"I've had faith in him all year and he seems to be in the sort of form he was two years ago."

On Thousand Stars, Mullins added: "He ran a cracker and is coming back to himself - we may keep him for the Aintree Hurdle. They've brought that race back to Thursday this year so the gap between it and Cheltenham is that bit tighter."

Walsh, also delighted with Hurricane Fly's run, told ATR: "I thought it was a very good performance. It was a good, even gallop, he travelled well, he jumped well and he moved away effortlessly from Paul's horse (Thousand Stars). He's probably a fitter horse than last year. Hopefully that will stand him in good stead in March."

The stewards looked into the running and riding of Binocular in third, but the explanations offered by Nicky Henderson and Tony McCoy were accepted.

12 February 2016

Josses Hill peaks at Kempton for red-hot Nico de Boinville
Willie Mullins seeking more Gowran gains with Sempre Medici
Nicky Henderson joy at 'perfect' My Tent Or Yours Kempton workout
Kempton scorer Josses Hill back in business for Nicky Henderson
Victoria Pendleton to gain more point-to-point experience
Open Eagle seeking to book Cheltenham ticket at Warwick
Tony Martin and Dedigout target Boyne brace at Navan
Morning chasing Red Mills glory at Gowran
Willie Mullins seeking more Gowran gains with Sempre Medici
Paul Nicholls hoping Dodging Bullets can fire in Newbury return
Rocky Creek aiming to regain winning thread as he tackles Denman date at Newbury
L'Ami Serge aiming to book Arkle ticket in Kingmaker test at Warwick
Harry Bentley joins Roger Varian's Newmarket team
Oisin Murphy sidelined by broken collar bone
Martin Lane sidelined following Kempton fall
Connections hoping Blazer is tailor-made for Betfair test
My Tent Or Yours to have Kingwell prep at Kempton
Top Notch handed Morebattle Kelso aim
Exeter call precautionary check for Sunday card
Market Rally repels British raiders to claim UAE Guineas gold at Meydan
Ma Du Fou strikes Listed gold for Warren Greatrex at Huntingdon
David Pipe mulling Festival hurdles switch with Kings Palace
Winter Escape on Aintree trail following Doncaster victory for Alan King
National aims for Kerry Lee's trio of star staying chasers
Nico de Boinville keen on Altior Cheltenham chance
Willie Mullins considering Punchestown test for Annie Power
Tom George issues ground warning ahead of God's Own Kempton spin
Jonjo O'Neill swerves Newbury with More Of That

11 February 2016

Bangor and Uttoxeter beaten by weather
Mags Mullins sets sights on Cheltenham Festival with Thurles winner Ballychorus
Ma Du Fou cashes in with Banks success at Huntingdon
Tom George earmarks Doncaster prep for Grand National hope Saint Are
Willie Mullins set to chart direct Cheltenham route with Annie Power
Tracey Collins joy at Captain comeback at Dundalk
Blazer features in five-pronged Willie Mullins Newbury raid
Uttoxeter makes early call to abandon Saturday fixture
Ruby Walsh left deflated by Killultagh Vic injury
Bangor Friday card declared a washout
JLT favourite Killultagh Vic ruled out of Cheltenham Festival
Weekend workout planned ahead of Ascot 'option' for Flemenstar
Triumph Hurdle contender Fixe Le Kap heading for Victor Ludorum at Haydock
Kim Bailey has Supreme thoughts for Charbel
North Hill Harvey bids to secure Cheltenham ticket at Huntingdon
Gigginstown happy to play waiting game in Cheltenham Gold Cup
Peace And Co undergoes 'straightforward' respiratory procedure
Victoria Pendleton poised for hunter chase bow at Fakenham
Paul Nicholls flat out to prove Aux Ptits Soins Cheltenham fitness

10 February 2016

Subtle Grey has Donald McCain smiling at Carlisle
Bangor 'relatively pessimistic' about Friday fixture
Nina Carberry awaits further news on back injury
Injured Wayne Hutchinson to return next week
Rookie trainer Andrew McNamara ready to roll at Navan
Revised Uttoxeter programme a doubt on Saturday
Bangor 'relatively pessimistic' about Friday fixture
Oliver Sherwood sets Rayvin Black Wincanton target
Brian Ellison outlines Cheltenham plans for 'monster' Small Talk
Carlisle meeting given go-ahead
Carlisle meeting given go-ahead
Paul Nicholls - Cheltenham domination for Willie Mullins would take title
Micky Hammond not afraid of Champion Chase challenge with Just Cameron
Dan Skelton thinking of Fred Winter for Market Rasen winner Kasakh Noir
Willie Mullins sits out weekend action with Gold Cup favourite Vautour
Barry Geraghty cautious on Betfair Hurdle chance for Blazer
Victoria Pendleton mount Pacha Du Polder could go straight to Cheltenham
Paul Nicholls hands Silviniaco Conti Ascot Chase mission
Dodging Bullets on course for Game Spirit return at Newbury
Kingmaker crucial in L'Ami Serge progression to Cheltenham

9 February 2016

Robbie in the care of jumping great Mary Reveley
Waterlogging beats Ludlow and Taunton
Tommy Silver going for Triumph Hurdle gold at Cheltenham
Taunton Thursday fixture abandoned
Waterlogging claims Ludlow card
Neil King considering Punchestown option for Lil Rockerfeller
Colin Tizzard outlines Gold Cup hopes for Thistlecrack
Martin Keighley hoping Any Currency can benefit from Cross Country changes
Highland Lodge on course for Grand National date
Ludlow look again
Hurdling campaign in store for Ptit Zig
Kim Bailey has Lingfield in mind for Wolverhampton winner Sunblazer
Thrilled Stuart Crawford considers Ryanair option for Fine Rightly

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