A round-up of the action from Fakenham on Monday as Olly Murphy saddled a remarkable four-timer.
Phil Middleton left Fakenham considerably richer than when he arrived after the victory of Holly Bush Henry in the feature race saw him scoop winning bets upwards of £50,000.
Having arrived by helicopter, the Aylesbury handler could become accustomed to such luxury after the 5-2 favourite’s half-length victory in the Wendling Handicap Chase under jockey-of-the-moment James Bowen.
He said: “I had a £100 each-way Yankee as Mark (Lowther, joint owner) had a party at Ascot on Saturday. I had Jenkins, Drumcliff, Acting Lass and a non-runner in the last (Santini).
“Then I had a £200 each-way accumulator with those three and Holly Bush Henry.
“I’ve not worked it out but I reckon it’s more than £50,000 for both bets.”
A trip to the Cheltenham Festival is now on the cards for Holly Bush Henry.
Middleton said: “The Pertemps is the plan. He is off 142 so he will get in it now. We will give him a little break now.”
Olly Murphy was almost lost for words after Bisoubisou (3-1 favourite) completed a 1,228-1 four-timer for the Warwickshire trainer when he defeated stablemate Flow With Eve by half a length in the concluding Longham Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle.
Murphy said: “It’s magic. If I had one winner I would have been over the moon.
“To have a four-timer, wherever it is in the country, is great. I am half-struck for words. Days like this you have to enjoy.”
Scarf-waving scenes associated with the Cheltenham Festival were witnessed from connections of Piri Massini (20-1) after he formed leg two of Murphy’s haul in the Racing To School Inspiring Young Minds Novices’ Hurdle.
Winning owner Chris Haughey said: “Today really was about making sure he got round the track and came home sound.
“It means the world to us as my whole family is involved in the horse. Olly is the magic man.”
Hurricane Rita (7-2 joint-favourite) got the ball rolling for Murphy when he initiated a brace for Richard Johnson in the Fakenham Junior School Handicap Hurdle.
The same partnership teamed up again with the Haughey-owned Wood Pigeon (9-4 joint-favourite) in the ROA/Racing Post Owners’ Jackpot Handicap Chase.
All eyes were on Cambridgeshire winner Dolphin Vista as Martyn Meade’s five-year-old made his jumps debut in the Racing Partnership Maiden Hurdle.
But the 6-4 favourite could only finish second to Potters Midnight and is now set to revert to the Flat.
Meade said: “It was a bit of a slog round there for him.
“I was very pleased the way he jumped, but that will be it with him (over hurdles) after that showing.
“He needed to be winning that by seven or eight lengths. The ground didn’t help particularly, but it will have done him good and will have toughened him up a bit.
“We can run now him in the Lincoln and give him a bit of a break now.”
Ride of the day
James Bowen continues to gain new fans and once again shone brightly when he galvanised Holly Bush Henry to glory off top weight in the feature race.
Quote of the day
Owner Chris Haughey summed up trainer Olly Murphy with five simple words: “Olly is the magic man.”
Performance of the day
Piri Massini has clearly had his problems but despite being off for 795 days he made a good impression when he made a winning debut under rules. He looks to have more races in him.