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Monday, 21 January, 2019

Cobden eyeing more top-level glory via number one Nicholls spot

Harry Cobden: will be the number one jockey for Paul Nicholls this season
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New Ditcheat number one Harry Cobden does not expect too much change in terms of number of rides for boss Paul Nicholls but is naturally relishing the challenge that awaits.

Champion conditional jockey in 2016-17, Cobden celebrated two top-level wins for Nicholls last season with Diego Du Charmil's victory in the Maghull Novices' Chase at Aintree following the earlier success of stable star Politologue in the Tingle Creek at Sandown.

Cobden, 19, said: “Paul has got plenty of jockeys and it’s a big team effort but it'll be nice to have a few extra rides and have a choice of the many good horses in the yard.

“It’s something that’s sort of just happened. I’ve been riding a lot of the horses recently – like last Saturday when myself and Sam [Twiston-Davies] shared the rides at Sandown – although I don’t see it being a lot different in terms of rides from the season just gone."

Sam Twiston-Davies to leave top job with Nicholls

Cobden will continue to count on the support of Colin Tizzard, for whom he rode 40 of his 76 winners last season, including on Kilbricken Storm in the Albert Bartlett at the Cheltenham Festival and a second Topham Chase triumph on Ultragold.

Cobden said: "I’m very much looking forward to working with Paul and Colin next season. I won’t be giving anything up at Colin’s – he’s been very good to me – and it’s nice to have all these good opportunities coming along."

Irving: a first Grade 1 winner for Harry Cobden in the Fighting Fifth Hurdle in 2016
Irving provided Cobden with a first Grade 1 win in the Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle two years ago, and the rider is eyeing further high-profile success.

Cobden is from a farming background and was spending Friday doing what he knows best besides riding – seeking some new additions to his herd at a cattle market.

Speaking on the phone, with the auction in the background, he said: “I definitely feel I can thrive on the pressure that comes with the number one spot and it'll be important to keep the winners flowing.

“I get on really well with everyone at Ditcheat and have had a tremendous three seasons there so far. Most of the owners back me so fingers crossed this season will be another good one.

“We’re hoping the yard’s horses are going to run to a really high standard. Paul has some exciting young recruits and hopefully everything will keep moving forward."

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I definitely feel I can thrive on the pressure that comes with the number one spot and it'll be important to keep the winners flowing
E.W. Terms
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