All Hallows pupil is selected for GB squad

Flying high: Talented young showjumper Robert Murphy and Del Fuego
Flying high: Talented young showjumper Robert Murphy and Del Fuego
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Young showjumper Robert aims for European victory.

A potential Olympian of the future is taking the next step on his quest for glory.

Thirteen-year-old Robert Murphy is aiming for European glory after being selected in British Showjumping’s championship squad.

The young equestrian, from Penwortham, near Preston, will take on other children from across Europe in the junior/ young rider event in Arezzo, Italy that starts July, 22-27.

This is the second time the youngster, who attends All Hallows Catholic high school, Penwortham, has competed at the European championships.

Last year Robert finished fourth at the competition in Spain but this time he is determined to do even better.

He said: “Last time I finished fourth, this year I want to go one better and win a medal.

“I’m really looking forward to it.”

Robert has been trained by his talented parents Peter and Eleni Murphy.

Mum Eleni qualified to represent Greece at the 2004 Athens Olympics but had to pull out.

And Robert’s father Peter trains the British adult show jumping team.

The family live at Pear Tree Farm, Flag Lane in Penwortham and Rob revealed his biggest hero is his trainer dad.

He said: “My dad is my hero. He worked so hard to get where he is and I’m so lucky to have this training.

“I’m looking forward to competing in Italy, my brother Michael, 12, will be there with my parents to support me.”

Robert will be riding Del Fuego, an 11-year-old bay gelding.

And Eleni believes that Robert was destined to be a champion.

She said: “I think he sat on a horse before he could walk.

“He has been riding a long time. Last year at the European championships he was only 12 and he finished fourth.

“He finished top of the British riders though.

“With horses sometimes you need a bit of luck.

“We help him out all the time, it takes a lot of training to compete at this level .He trains after school and all the time.

“We are really proud of him,he works really, really hard.”