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tHe Cotswold ContendeRs!

we aRe waving goodbye To one Champion joCKey This weeK buT on wednesday he was oveRshadowed by The man i ThinK will suCCeed him in 22-yeaR-old sam TwisTon-davies. peTeR sCudamoRe, 12Th maRCh 2015 of getting there. It’s going to be a very competitive race and fingers crossed… being champion jockey would be my best achievement.” Indeed, Sporting Life reported in April that AP himself would fancy a flutter on Richard Johnson, quoting him on William Hill radio: “I’d like Richard Johnson to be Champion Jockey because he made me achieve a lot of the things that I did.” This will be by no means an easy fight, however, with two more local lads - Sam Twiston-Davies and Tom Scudamore - jostling for the same coveted position.

And I have a big opportunity to do just that next season – assuming I stay clear of injury and don’t make too many mistakes. For two decades AP has had the championship sewn up by the time the Festival comes around and hopefully I can step into his rather large boots in a year’s time.”

Sam Twiston-Davies has been sponsored for the last two seasons by local independent estate agency Harrison James & Hardie. Principal Director James von Speyr has been an avid race-goer and a member of Cheltenham Racecourse for years. “The directors have been delighted to champion Sam and to witness his meteoric rise during the last couple of years from relative youngster to star performer. We have been thrilled by all the exposure that his success has brought for us, of course, and whilst we would love to sponsor him for a third season we realise we might have some serious competition ourselves, now!”

way you won’t be putting too much pressure on yourself … you’re able to ride comfortably.You’re always trying your best but that added pressure is something you don’t want, obviously, with riding for Paul Nicholls as well. I give it everything I can but at the same time you are only trying to keep the boys happy, aren’t you?”

Sam may not have ridden as many winners as Johnson but his strike rate is the best in the field at 26% and he has already racked up a total prize pot in excess of £131,000*. With Nicholls’ stable looking in fine form, surely he has a great chance? Speaking to Betfred TV in April 2015, Sam TwistonDavies acknowledges he is a strong contender but explains his main desire is just to do well for Paul Nicholls and his father Nigel, and to keep injury free. He keeps thoughts of the championship very much at the back of his mind. “The way I think about it is, go into the season as if AP is still riding because that

In third place at the bookies and third in the running according to the Professional Jockeys’ Association is Tom Scudamore, jockey for David Pipe, son of eight-time champion jockey Peter Scudamore and grandson of Michael, winner of the Grand National on Oxo in 1959.Tom is three wins behind Sam Twiston-Davies right now but has an impressive total prize pot of almost £165,000 to his name. Tom wrote in the Mirror just before the Festival in March about his desire to become champion. “Let’s get one thing out of the way — I’m desperate to take over AP McCoy’s mantle as champion jockey.

Who knows what Tom made of his father Peter’s opinion only a few days later, when writing in the Daily Mail on 12th March following Sam’s triumphant win on Dodging Bullets in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. “We are waving goodbye to one champion jockey this week in AP McCoy but on Wednesday he was overshadowed by the man I think will succeed him in 22-year-old Sam Twiston-Davies. With the support of Paul Nicholls, his trainer-father Nigel and the potential backing of Newmarket-based John Ferguson, a big help to McCoy this season, there will be a healthy supply of ammunition,” said Peter Scudamore. If you fancy a long-term bet then Johnson is currently the bookies’ favourite with odds on Sam Twiston-Davies and Scudamore at 7/2 and 9/2 respectively, whilst Barry Geharty trails in fourth place at 33/1. It’s early doors but one thing is for certain – the North Cotswolds racing crowd will be celebrating whatever the outcome. At Cheltenham Racecourse, preparations for the new grandstand are in full swing and everyone is looking forward with bated breath. If you fancy a flutter but want to check out the form, the Showcase at Cheltenham is the first big opportunity and Cotswold Homes has tickets to give away - just turn to the Competition and Offers section (on page 4) to find out how to enter! * stats correct on 22 June 2015 www.cotswold-homes.com

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