Festival trainer Murphy dies at age of 70
THE man who was known as the Cheltenham Festival’s leading trainer of the north has died aged 70
Ferdy Murphy enjoyed a host of big race successes at National Hunt racing’s most prestigious meeting before he relocated to France in 2013.
Over the years, Murphy had more than 20 winners at Prestbury Park and his horses earned in excess of £1 million.
Murphy said his best moment at the track came when Anaglog’s Daughter took the 1980 Arkle Trophy.
He would go on to train many leading lights from Wynbury Stables in West Witton.
Arguably his best horse was French Holly, winner of the 1998 Royal & Sunalliance Novices Hurdle at Cheltenham, while Truckers Tavern finished second to Best Mate in the 2003 Gold Cup.
Murphy celebrated three victories in the Scottish National (Paris Pike 2000, Joes Edge 2005, Hot Weld 2007) and two in what is now the Bet365 Gold Cup.
He also won the Irish National in 2004 with Granit Destruval.
Another star was Kalahari King and although he never managed to win at the Cheltenham Festival in five attempts, he was a runner-up twice.
The smart two-mile chaser gave Murphy his final Grade One triumph at the Grand National meeting in 2009.
As well as nurturing equine talent, he also helped many top jockeys during his career, including Davy Russell, Adrian Maguire and Graham Lee.