Paul Nicholls: aiming to retain his trainers’ title
PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
By Andrew King 8:37PM 30 DEC 2016
CHAMPION trainer Paul Nicholls is predicting a “right scrap” between himself and Colin Tizzard for the trainers’ title.
Speaking after Coillte Lass took the Listed mares’ novice hurdle at Taunton to provide him with win number 101 for the season, Nicholls said: “Last year was a right scrap between me and Willie Mullins and it looks like being the same with Colin. If he won the Gold Cup, which he might well do, that is worth the best part of £300,000 and it would make things very interesting.
“At present Colin has had all the big winners and we are still £200,000 in front of him. We have a lot of horses still to run in the new year and we have to make sure we keep Mr Tizzard at bay over the coming months.”
Tizzard, who chipped away at Nicholls’ lead over the festive period with big-race wins from Thistlecrack and Native River, is a top price of 9-2 with Paddy Power to win a first trainers’ title. Nicholls is a best price of 1-6 to win it for the tenth time.
Nicholls notched a landmark 100 winners at Doncaster on Thursday and added: “Our best total for a season is 154 so I would be looking to try and get 160 on the board for this term as long as the weather is kind.”
Coillte Lass, who is now unbeaten in three starts for Nicholls, added over £11,000 to the pot when winning at Taunton on Friday.