Horse Racing By Jon Ivan-Duke

Sir Anthony McCoy Reckons Nicholls Still One To Beat

In his latest blog for William Hill, Sir Anthony McCoy says Paul Nicholls is the one to beat in the Trainers’ Championship, despite Colin Tizzard’s fantastic start to the season…

“Colin Tizzard has had a brilliant start to the season with the likes of Thistlecrack, Cue Card, Fox Norton and now Native River, but I doubt he can beat Paul Nicholls to the title. If Willie Mullins struggled to beat Paul when he had seven or eight winners at Cheltenham Festival, I don’t know how Colin is going to do it. He’s not going to have as many winners at Cheltenham and three of his top contenders might all be running in the Gold Cup. If he won the Grand National, then obviously that would put him in the mix, but that race requires a lot of luck.

Paul Nicholls might not always have a Kauto Star, a Master Minded or a Denman, but last year he managed to win the Championship without a stable star. It’s all about clever placement for Saturday races. The perfect example is winning the Fighting Fifth with a yoke like Irving, no disrespect to him. To win a second Fighting Fifth with him is a brilliant training performance. I think Paul Nicholls will win the trainers’ title purely because of his ability to find Saturday races with good prize money and coming out on top with a horse that isn’t necessarily the best in the race.”

2016-17 National Hunt Trainers’ Championship: 1-6 Paul Nicholls, 4-1 Colin Tizzard, 10-1 Willie Mullins, 20-1 Nicky Henderson, 33-1 Dan Skelton, 66-1 Philip Hobbs

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