Nicholls has Just the thing for victory
PAUL NICHOLLS has won the RSA Worcester Novices' Chase at Newbury with a few reasonable staying types and Just A Par looked another from the same mould.
Michel Le Bon and Aiteen Thirtythree had provided the Grade Two honours for Ditcheat in the previous five years, but looking further back, the likes of Cornish Rebel, Valley Henry and See More Indians achieved even better things further down the line.
Runner-up behind At Fishers Cross in a Grade One novice hurdle at Aintree in the spring, Just A Par was beaten into second by Shotgun Paddy when odds-on for his chasing debut at Chepstow in late October, but made amends in encouraging fashion.
Sent off the 5/4 favourite, he was ridden handily by Daryl Jacob, but hit something of a flat spot jumping the first fence in the home straight, where four stood almost in line.
However, Just A Par saw the three miles out well and it was all over by the last as he stretched 17 lengths clear of Third Intention.
Nicholls said: "He's still as green as grass and you'd hope in a year's time he might be back here for the Hennessy."
Stablemate Rolling Aces lifted the bet365 Novices' Limited Handicap Chase a year ago, and it stayed in Nicholls' possession courtesy of a spring-heeled success from 5/4 favourite Easter Day.
Nicholls said: "He had a run at Chepstow and off 135, he really had to win if he jumped.
"He's not the biggest of horses, but he does jump well."