Hurricane Fly (blue silks): finished third in the Champion Hurdle last weekPICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
Mullins vows to get Fly back to winning ways
TRAINER Willie Mullins has vowed to get Hurricane Fly "back to winning ways" at Punchestown following the star hurdler's disappointing defeat in the Stan James Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham last week.
Hurricane Fly, the reigning champion going into the race, was sent off the odds-on favourite but was never in a position to land a serious blow behind Rock On Ruby and Overturn.
Mullins said he will now try and get Hurricane Fly back to his best before the defence of the Rabobank Champion Hurdle, which he's won for the past two years, at Punchestown next month.
Willie Mullins: targeting Punchestown with star duoPICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos)
"He was probably a little disappointing on the day and he probably wasn't as keen as he usually is," said Mullins.
"We were hoping settling better would improve him but it didn't and we paid the price but hopefully we'll get him back to winning ways by Punchestown.
"I think he ran slightly flat, and Boston Bob didn't seem to pick up the bridle either, and I was amazed that both horses got into their races given how flat they ran."
Boston Bob will also head to Punchestown after finishing second to Brindisi Breeze in the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle last Friday.
Of his defeat, Mullins told At The Races: "He wasn't travelling for Ruby [Walsh] and he would have expected to travel and gain half a length at every hurdle and be getting into the race at his leisure. Ruby wasn't happy and he was niggling from an early stage."
The Irish Daily Mirror War Of Attrition Novice Hurdle over 3m is likely to be his Punchestown target.