Former Hartpury College student Amy Murphy has celebrated a landmark winner as a racehorse trainer at this year’s Grand National Festival.
Amy, who gained a triple distinction – the highest grade possible – in the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Horse Management (Business) at Hartpury, scored her first Grade One success with stable star Kalashnikov on the first day of the showpiece meeting at Aintree.
The victory at the highest level of jump racing prompted huge scenes of joy at the racecourse and among the members of Amy’s team watching the race on TV at her stable in Newmarket.
It was made even sweeter because Kalashnikov, who was ridden to success by Jack Quinlan, is owned by Amy’s father Paul.
“Unbelievable - I am hugely proud of our team,” said Amy. “What a ride from Jack. He rode him like he was the best horse in the race and pounced late.
“This is a great way to finish the season, and it's great to get my first Grade One winner for my father. I think I lost my shoes twice out there but somehow I’ve survived!”
Amy has spoken in the past about how her studies at Hartpury – the largest equine educational establishment in the world – had provided her with a superb platform on which to build her career in horseracing.
It helped her gain a wealth of experience working for leading trainers, including Gold Cup winner Nicky Henderson.
“It was a great grounding for me at Hartpury,” said Amy. “I learned an awful lot during my time there and it was a great way to get started.”
Hartpury College and Hartpury University offer a range of diplomas, undergraduate and postgraduate degrees related to equine studies.
Students have access to world-class facilities, including an Indoor Championship Arena, outdoor and indoor arenas, cross-country courses, stabling for 230 horses (including students’ own horses) and Hartpury’s Equine Therapy Centre.
All of Hartpury’s equine facilities are prioritised to enhance the student experience.
They are used for lectures, practicals and seminars, but also to provide work experience and volunteering opportunities, to support student and staff research and to provide experience of ‘real world’ situations.
Picture: Kalashnikov, trained by Hartpury College graduate Amy Murphy, winning at Aintree