Paul Nicholls has enjoyed a remarkable 2020/21 season so far. Every weekend, the Somerset-based trainer seems to have a plethora of winners. This season overall, he’s enjoyed 109 winners from 410 runners, an incredible 27% strike-rate.
Last Saturday encapsulated his glorious campaign, with a magnificent seven winners. If you backed all of them, you would have sat on an enormous 10,419-1 acca, which certainly couldn’t be grovelled at!
1.50 Warwick – Next Destination
The shortest price of his Saturday runners, Next Destination bids to remain unbeaten over fences. A Grade 1 winning hurdler for Willie Mullins, he was placed at Grade 2 level over hurdles on debut for Nicholls in October.
Switched to fences subsequently, he was a very comfortable winner at Newbury in November, scooping a Grade 2 prize. He defeated One For The Team on that occasion, who wasn’t entirely disgraced in the Kauto Star at Kempton over Christmas.
He shapes as just the type who will improve for further experience, very lightly-raced for his age after missing all of 2019. In the right hands to continue improving, he’s going to be tough to beat if he does just that.
2.25 Warwick – Sending Love
Another horse Nicholls acquired from the Mullins camp, Sending Love made a winning debut for Ditcheat at Ffos Las in November. She was immediately sent into Grade 2 company at Sandown, where she finished third behind Star Gate.
She once again goes for Grade 2 glory, but the competition is easier, on paper, this time around. She’s rated five pounds below the top-rated horse and after just four starts, she remains unexposed.
An extra furlong in distance can only help matters and she’ll relish the softer ground too. She does need another step in the right direction, but given the form of Nicholls, that’s more than plausible.
4.05 Warwick – Gold Bullion
Nicholls has enjoyed a particularly good season in bumpers, operating at a 37% strike-rate from 35 runners. Those 13 winners have constituted to a £8.67 profit to level stakes and it enhances the claims of Gold Bullion.
He cost 90,000 euros as a three-year-old and comes from a very useful family. A son of Fame And Glory, he’s related to the likes of Flower Des Champs and Grade 1 winner Fleur D’Ainay.
As previously mentioned, Nicholls has a great strike-rate in bumpers and his horses tend to be clued up for their debut. No horse in the field has experience, with it being a newcomers event, which perhaps increases his already big chance.