Getabird – Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle (2018)

Won by the likes of Vautour, Douvan and Min in recent years, trainer Willie Mullins continues to maintain his grasp on the Grade 2 Sky Bet Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle – this time with the ultra-impressive Getabird, who flies to victory at Punchestown under jockey Patrick Mullins for owners Rich and Susannah Ricci.

Grade 1 winner Mengli Khan could not land a blow on the winner, who was very highly-regarded last season and unbeaten in bumper races. Favourite for the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival, Getabird did not make the spring festivals because of injury.

The Getaway gelding has not looked back this season, the six-year-old winning nicely on hurdles debut last month before a commanding success here. Getabird is now the hot favourite for the Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, the opening race of the Cheltenham Festival in March.

Willie Mullins said: “He jumped fantastic and way better than on his first run. I was a bit worried whether he would be able to jump at the speed they would be going here.

“I don’t know what route we’re going to go, but you’d have to think as a Supreme Novices’ trial that he’d be good enough for that, but he’ll certainly be entered for the other races like the Ballymore.

“Jumping the way he did, that brings the Supreme into the picture. After his first run I was a little bit worried, but certainly the way he was there he’d be well able to jump with any novice.

“The speed he showed was very good. He got a nice bunch of horses off the bridle and we’re on the way up, I think. I don’t know yet if he’ll go straight to Cheltenham. We’ll see how he comes out of it.”

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