Trainer Paul Nicholls got one over on rival Willie Mullins at the Scottish Grand National after Vicente produced a fine finish to leave the rest of the field in his wake. The win was one of four for Nicholls at Ayr over the weekend, taking him into the lead in the trainers Championship which ends this Saturday. Hopes of a Scottish victory faded when seeyouatmidnight failed to capitalise on his lead with just one fence remaining.
With the Irish and Grand National titles already in the bag, Mouse Morris was unable to win an unprecedented three in a row. Folsom Blue was moving into contention at Ayr before being taken out by a fellow rider with just six fences remaining. With little to choose between the leaders going into the last, Vicente benefited from a considerably cleaner jump and went on to win by two and three quarter lengths from Alvarado in second place. Seeyouatmidnight had to be content with third place in the end, with Vicente claiming the £120,000 first prize. With mixed fortunes in past races, recent form for Vicente meant that he was the 14/1 outsider for the race with bookmakers Coral. However, his win now gives Nicholls a narrow lead in the race for the trainers Championship with just one week remaining of the season.
Having started the day trailing, wins for Vivaldi Collonges and Le Mercury added over £40,000 to Nicholls’ total. Vicente’s victory then added a further significant pay package for Nicholls, who now holds a lead of just over £30,000. Despite this, trainer Mullins remains the favourite to claim the crown with odds of 8/11 from Coral. The Irishman heads to Sandown next weekend for what could be a season defining meeting.
The Scottish National certainly rounded off what has been a feast of horse racing over the last few weeks. The Cheltenham Festival, along with the National races has certainly provided supporters and punters alike with numerous opportunities to win big on historic races. For those of you looking to remaining races of the season to add to your winnings, it is certainly worthwhile taking a look at horse racing tips provided by Coral before placing your bets.
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