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Picture: Bravemansgame is a Gold Cup contender (Credit: Sky Sports)

14-time champion trainer Paul Nicholls previews his 2024 Cheltenham Festival stars – and reveals his dark horse for the Festival

  • Betfair ambassador Paul Nicholls is once again sending a strong team of runners to the Cheltenham Festival

  • The 14-time champion trainer has stable stars Bravemansgame and Stay Away Fay ready to launch bids for Gold Cup and Brown Advisory glory

  • The trainer has also hinted at who his dark horse will be from his stable to bag a big winner at Cheltenham


Cheltenham Gold Cup – Bravemansgame

Bravemansgame is right back on it in his schooling. I know we have got him better than he was in the autumn, which I made a bit of a pig’s ear of for various reasons.

“Last year, he ran a blinding race to finish second in the Gold Cup and I think he has a chance again. It’s between the favourite – Galopin Des Champs – and Fastorslow, Shishkin and Bravemansgame.

“He has a chance of running in this race and being placed again. Whether anyone can beat the favourite, nobody knows, but Bravemansgame looks great. I love this race and would love to win it again. “

Ginny’s Destiny – Turners Novices Chase

“His improvement has been phenomenal. Each race he has got better and better. The only other horse I have seen improve like this was Masterminded. There may even be a bit of improvement to come yet. He must have a lovely chance.”

“Masterminded was a multiple Grade 1 winner, who won back to back Champion Chases at the Cheltenham Festival in 2008 and 2009, so that is a flattering comparison.”

Stay Away Fay – Brown Advisory

“He had a nice gallop at Kempton last week and he is ready now. He races behind the bridle so we are thinking about putting cheek-pieces on him, to focus his mind a bit.

“We will put them on him to work on Saturday and if that sharpens him up then he will wear them in the Brown Advisory.”

Captain Teague – Albert Bartlett or Baring Bingham

“The ground will be the deciding factor in which race he runs.

“Captain Teague is a big price in the Albert Bartlett and the Baring Bingham. He will only run in the Baring Bingham if the ground is very testing.

“He is a Grade 1 winner and is probably one of our best chances.”