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Stuart Dalgleish 17th Jan 2012 - 12:48

Nicky in the pink? Cheltenham Leading Trainer odds

William Hill have priced up the Cheltenham Festival Thomas Pink Leading Trainer Award, installing the 2010 table-topper Nicky Henderson as a narrow 7-4 market leader.

In what looks the most competitive title-race seen for years, 2011 winner Willie Mullins, who was priced originally quoted at 13-2 prior to last year's success, is now 15-8 second-favourite. The champion Irish handler was subject to significant support in the run-up to last year's Festival.

UK Champion Trainer Paul Nicholls is third in the betting at 2-1 with William Hill, the biggest price the Ditcheat maestro has been quoted in recent years.

William Hill spokeswoman Lucy Rhodes said "We foolishly underestimated Willie Mullins last year, and will certainly be taking no chances over the defending champion this time around, however this looks one of the most competitive title-races seen for as long as we can remember"

Cheltenham Festival Thomas Pink Leading Trainer Award (William Hill bet): 7-4 Nicky Henderson, 15-8 Willie Mullins, 2-1 Paul Nicholls, 25-1 Philip Hobbs, 33-1 Alan King, Donald McCain, 40-1 David Pipe, 50-1 Gordon Elliot, Jonjo O'Neill, Nigel Twiston-Davies, Noel Meade

William Hill have also priced up the Thomas Pink Leading Jockey Award, where William Hill King George hero Ruby Walsh, who has dominated the Cheltenham Festival for the past decade, is hot favourite at 8-11.

Barry Geraghty is next in the betting at 11-4, whilst 16-time Champion Jockey Tony McCoy is available at 8-1, ahead of Richard Johnson at 14-1.

This year's Cheltenham Festival is set to be spiced up by exciting young jockeys on the scene, and William Hill quote Brendan Powell Jnr and Harry Derham at 20-1 to both ride a winner over the four-day National Hunt highlight.

Cheltenham Festival Thomas Pink Leading Jockey Award (William Hill bet): 8-11 Ruby Walsh, 11-4 Barry Geraghty, 8-1 AP McCoy, 14-1 Richard Johnson, 16-1 Robert Thornton, 20-1 Jason Maguire, Paul Townend, 25-1 Davy Russell, 33-1 Andrew Lynch, Daryl Jacob, 50-1 Paul Carberry, Sam Twiston-Davies, Tom Scudamore, 100-1 Nina Carberry

(win only - market will be settled on the number of winners, if there is a tie the greater number of second places will determine the winner, again if there is a tie the greatest number of third places will determine the winner - excludes Derby Charity Race)

Brendan Powell Jnr to ride a winner at the Cheltenham Festival: 4-1
Harry Derham to ride a winner at the Cheltenham Festival: 3-1

Brendan Powell Jnr & Harry Derham to ride a winner at the Cheltenham Festival: 20-1

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