Nicholls Farrier Wins Top Award
Tom Bougourd, farrier to champion National Hunt trainer Paul Nicholls, has won the Victory Magnum and a special trophy to commemorate Dodging Bullets’ Queen Mother Champion Chase win at Cheltenham.
The Victory Magnum is awarded by Atlantic Equine Ltd, U.K. importers and distributors for the Victory Racing Plate Company, to the farrier plating the most Grade 1, Cheltenham Festival and big handicap winners in Victory aluminium racing plates over any one season. In a stellar season even by his standards, Paul Nicholls sent out fifteen qualifying winners, leaving all other contenders trailing in his wake.
The horses involved were Zarkandar (Grand Prix d’Automne), Caid du Berlais (Paddy Power Gold Cup), Silviniaco Conti (Betfair Chase, King George VI Chase and Betfred Bowl), Irving (Fighting Fifth Hurdle), Vibrato Valtat (Henry VIII Novices Chase), Dodging Bullets (Tingle Creek Chase and Clarence House Chase in addition to the Queen Mother Champion Chase), Aux Petits Soins (Coral Cup), Qualando (Fred Winter Juvenile Hurdle), All Yours (Anniversay 4-year-old Juvenile Hurdle), Saphir du Rheu (Mildmay Novices Chase) and Just A Par (Bet 365 Gold Cup).
The unique trophy comprised one of Dodging Bullets’ plates from his Festival win, mounted on wood with a brass plaque identifying horse, race and farrier.
Tom Bougourd, who lives in Clevedon, North Somerset, has been with the Nicholls yard since 2011, but the lead farrier only since October 2014.
“It’s a privilege to be working with the top National Hunt yard in the country and we’ve had an incredible season,” he said. “I have to thank Paul, Clifford (Baker), Tom (Jonason), Dominic Northmore (farrier) and my Dad (William Bougourd, also a farrier), and the whole team for their support. I just try to keep the ball rolling. I’m looking forward to the new season and winning the magnum again!”
Tom Jonason, Assistant Trainer, said, “There are a lot of different cogs that keep the whole Paul Nicholls wheel turning, and Tom’s hard work has been integral to our success this season. They are often overlooked but we are hugely reliant on the work of a good farrier.”
The champagne, with personalised label, and trophy were awarded by Tony Lindsell, a director of Atlantic Equine Ltd.
“We are proud to have been supplying the yard with Victory racing plates since Paul started training,” he said. “I don’t think the odds would be very long about me being back at Ditcheat for another presentation to Tom this time next year!”