Paul Nicholls Racing
Welcome to the website of Paul Nicholls Racing which contains a wealth of detail on all aspects of our training operation at Ditcheat. Paul has changed the face of jump racing since he arrived here in October 1991 with eight horses and a notably positive attitude in his relentless pursuit of success. Over 3,600 winners have followed his initial victory with Olveston part owned by his mother, at Hereford a few days short of Christmas 1991. A double at Newton Abbot on Boxing Day offered further evidence that the talented young trainer was on his way and he ended his first season with ten winners.
During his time as a jump jockey that yielded 119 winners Paul was always looking ahead to the day when he could try his hand as a trainer. All he needed was a chance. It came from Ditcheat farmer Paul Barber who chose him from more than a dozen applicants.
Single minded to the point of obsession, the eager young trainer acknowledged that he had plenty to learn and was not afraid to make mistakes. It helped no end that from the start he has been supported to the hilt by his new landlord.
In the years that followed Paul Nicholls’ accumulation of glory has included close on 150 Grade 1 winners, fourteen trainers’ championships, four Cheltenham Gold Cups, a Grand National and the King George V1 Chase an astonishing thirteen times.
Apart from the campaign cut short by the pandemic in 2019-20 he has delivered a century of winners for the last twenty two seasons at a consistently high strike record and recorded a personal best total of 176 in 2020-21
In April this year he ended last season with an outstanding strike record of 27% together with a personal record total in prize money of £3,646,585.
Paul was immensely proud to be awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours list in 2020. That followed a lengthy visit to the yard by the late Queen who spent time meeting his family and staff and inspecting at close quarters some of his better known horses.
Late in April 2022 he saved the best to last of another prolific campaign by training five of the seven winners at Sandown on the final day of the season.
Earlier in his career he handled a quartet of champions at the same time with a calm sureness of touch as Kauto Star, Master Minded, Denman and Big Buck’s carried all before them in the races that matter most in the jumping calendar.
Horses of such rare quality don’t come along too often and once they retired the task of finding replacements proved challenging. Yet soon Silviniaco Conti, Dodging Bullets, Politologue and several others proved well up to the task at the highest level.
In recent years Paul has developed an increasingly fruitful system by annually securing at the sales a number of beautifully bred young store horses that he hopes and believes can develop into the stars of the future along with others bought after showing smart form in bumpers and Point-to-Points.
His brigade of three and four years olds start their education with record breaking Point-to-Point champion Will Biddick before taking the next step in bumpers the following season. This firmly established conveyor belt of raw, natural equine talent continues to pay rich dividends.
Stay Away Fay, Knappers Hill, Hermes Allen, Stage Star, Rubaud and Henri The Second are among the latest group of graduates to shine with two dozen or more promising younger types yet to be seen on a racecourse.
Paul frequently pays tribute to Team Ditcheat, the talented and hard working members of staff led by his long time head lad and assistant Clifford Baker who turn out in all weathers to keep the show on the road.
Clifford is the first man into the yard in the morning and the last to leave at night. Leading by example the duo expect and maintain the highest standards at all times. Short cuts are not an option. Only the best will do for the 150 horses at Ditcheat and at the trainer’s own yard nearby at Alhampton.
After more than thirty years with a licence Paul is still searching restlessly for ways to improve and enhance the art of producing winners.
All weather gallops are repaired, surfaces topped up, boxes upgraded, the outdoor schooling arena has been improved and a new mechanical horse walker now stands on the site which was once Paul Barber’s vegetable garden.
Paul’s appetite for success remains as keen as ever and while stable flagship Clan Des Obeaux and Yala Enki have earned honourable retirement he is understandably excited by his current stable stars including Bravemansgame, Hitman, Greaneteen, Pic D’Orhy, and the prolific veteran Frodon, with a classy crop of young prospects making their way through the ranks.
You can read about them on our website where you can also to get to know the skilled and dedicated members of Team Ditcheat including assistant trainer Charlie Davies, our travelling head girl Julie Batho, plus pupil assistant Natalie Parker who has been joined in the role this summer by Andrew Glastonbury and Lawrence Jordan.
Our high achieving squad of top jockeys is led by Harry Cobden, Bryony Frost and Lorcan Williams ably supported by conditional jockeys Angus Cheleda, Tom Buckley and Freddie Gingell and our amateurs Olive Nicholls, Natalie Parker, Anna Johnstone and Charlie Sprake.
We pride ourselves on providing the best level of care for our horses and hope that comes through as you take a virtual look round our operation.
|TOTAL TRAINED NATIONAL HUNT WINNERS
|2023-24 NH SEASON
PAUL NICHOLLS RACING
|Cheltenham Gold Cup
|King George VI Chase
- Monday 26th February
An excellent double at Kempton on Saturday advertised ... Read More
- Monday 19th February
A sparkling double at Ascot on Saturday took the prize ... Read More
- Monday 12th February
Winners seemed totally insignificant when the I heard ... Read More
- Monday 29th January
Ginny’s Destiny was the star of the show at Cheltenham ... Read More
- Monday 22nd January
Normal service resumed after the big freeze with the ... Read More
- Monday 15th January
Two classy French recruits offered untold promise for ... Read More