British Trainers Championship Standings - 18/02/2019

British Trainers Championship Standings

Paul Nicholls' super Saturday in the winners enclosure has put him into a convincing and useful advantage over old advisory and current Champion Trainer Nicky Henderson in this year's Championship.

Despite the fact both Henderson and Dan Skelton - currently occupying second and third in the Trainers Championship have independently trained more winners, Nicholls leads the way on prize money - with currently £2.1 million accumulated this campaign; almost £400,000 ahead of the man from Seven Burrows.

Both Skelton and Colin Tizzard are also in the millions, but the Ditcheat team were assisted by some mouthwatering results from the weekend just gone - racking up an across the card eight-timer.

Five of those victories came from Ascot, four of which ridden by Harry Cobden, which included Cyrname's obliteration of the Ascot Chase field, and Clan Des Obeaux's warm-up for the Gold Cup.

Nicholls - who has to wait in the wings for the past couple of years whilst Nicky Henderson has assumed dominance in the National Hunt season, believes he finally may have a team that is beginning to resemble that of the old greats in his yard.

(Credit: Racing Post) He said: "I think the 24 runners on Saturday was the biggest team I've sent out and all credit to the team, who also had to get the extra paperwork sorted – they're amazing.

"This Saturday we won't have the same numbers, but not everything is about preparing for Cheltenham and we'll have plenty of runners with the horses in such good form. We'll make hay while the sun shines."

"I've a stronger team than recently for Cheltenham and I'm in a nice position, being in front and with over £2 million in prize-money before the festival.

"The title's going to be interesting, but I get more pleasure with big-race winners, like we had on Saturday," he finished.

Nicholls was cut to 6/4 from 9/4 by several bookmakers to successfully fend off current champ Nicky Henderson and land an 11th Trainers' Championship, and cut to 16/1 from 20's, to be top trainer at the upcoming Cheltenham Festival - for the first time in ten years.

His squad will be without Arkle fancy Dynamite Dollars, but instead headed by Clan Des Obeaux for the Festival feature - the Gold Cup, with the 7yo sharing familiar company with stablemate Frodon, who has some excellent course form to his name this term.

Quel Destin looks set to hunt down Sir Erec in the Triumph, Cyrname could hit the Ryanair, whilst Black Corton could be set for one of the big handicaps.

Nicky Henderson however, looks to have a likewise strong team heading to Prestbury Park in three weeks time.

Speaking to the media on Monday morning, he alerted members of the press that Championship race favourite duo Buveur D'Air and Altior along with Ballymore favourite Champ, are all in top shape ahead of their spring targets.