Hurricane Fly

Hurricane Fly Horse

Irish stallion Montjeu was best known for winning the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes at Ascot back in 2000. By breeding him with less successful dam Scandisk, Hurricane Fly was born in 2004. The competitive nature of Hurricane Fly eventually saw him become the first horse in nearly forty years to regain the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham Festival for a second time.

Starting life in France, Hurricane Fly ran ten races, winning twice and finishing second twice, giving George Creighton and Rose Boyd enough reason to buy him and send him to be trained by professional horse trainer Willie Mullins in Ireland. After enjoying a record of twenty-six wins, five seconds and four thirds from a total of forty-two recognised race meetings, Willie Mullins retired Hurricane Fly in 2015, hailing him as the ‘horse of a generation’.

Hurricane Fly Races

The transition to Ireland had Hurricane Fly running his first race two months after moving, where he won the Punchestown Maiden Hurdle, following it up by also finishing first in the Gras Savoye Prix de Longchamp at Auteuil back in France. A second run at Auteuil a month later saw Hurricane Fly only reaching second in the Prix Alain du Breil, but he bounced back immediately after, winning three on the bounce in the Bar One Racing Royal Bond Novice Hurdle at Fairyhouse, the Paddy Power Future Champion Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown, and the Evening Herald Champion Novice Hurdle at Punchestown.

With so much promise in opening race meetings, it was expected that Hurricane Fly would be an instant hit at Cheltenham Festival, but he was shown to still be a work in progress when he only reached third in the Stan James Champion Hurdle, to which he was priced as the clear favourite. The third-place finish sparked off his best ever run of wins though, winning nine in succession between April 2012 and March 2014 including in the next edition of the Stan James Champion Hurdle, coming to an end in the 2014 edition of the same race.

2014 continued with a mix of results, only finishing as high as second in the Racing Post Champion Hurdle at Punchestown but winning the Stan James Morgiana Hurdle, as well as the Ryanair Hurdle at Leopardstown. The following year ended up being the last that Hurricane Fly would run in competitively, where he won the BHP Insurances Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown, finished third in the Stan James Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy, resulted as runner-up in the Ladbrokes World Series Hurdle at Punchestown, and finished sixth in the Grande Course de Haies d’Auteuil, back at Auteuil where he first started his career.

Hurricane Fly Cheltenham

As The Cheltenham Festival is so often used as a way of measuring a horse’s quality, it would always be a test over the standard of Hurricane Fly based on his record at the racecourse. He was able to stake his claim at Cheltenham in winning the Champion Hurdle in 2011, finishing third in the 2012 edition, but bouncing back to win the race for a second time in 2013. He made a total of five entries into Cheltenham Festival, running in the Champion Hurdle every time, winning twice and also finishing third twice.