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Paul Nicholls extended his lead over Willie Mullins in a pulsating duel for the Brit
Paul Nicholls extended his lead over Willie Mullins in a pulsating duel for the British trainers championship when enjoying a 54th birthday 20-1 four-timer at Wincanton. Air Force 1 Low Blanche . Paul Nicholls extended his lead over Willie Mullins in a pulsating duel for the British trainers championship when enjoying a 54th birthday 20-1 four-timer at Wincanton.Fresh from a fabulous four-timer at Ayr on Saturday, highlighted by Vicentes victory in the Scottish Grand National that put him back in the driving seat, the Ditcheat handler repeated the trick at his local track from just four runners. Nicholls now has a handy £43,160 advantage over his Irish rival as the battle enters its final week.Zubayr (1-8 favourite) gave Nicholls the best possible start as he romped away with the Ridegway BMW Novices Hurdle.The four-year-old never gave his supporters an anxious moment as he made amends for a poor show at Cheltenham.The French import had been sent off third-favourite for the Triumph Hurdle on the back of a smooth debut success in the Grade Two Adonis Hurdle at Kempton, but was well-beaten behind Ivanovich Gorbatov.However, Zubayr got back on track with a confidence-boosting win by eight lengths under Nick Scholfield.Nicholls said: I knew I ran him too quick at Cheltenham when I saw him in the paddock. We were hard on him and rushed to get ready for Kempton and he wasnt really right in his coat.Hes done well since. This was a different race but hes had a nice run round and I expect youll see him back here at Wincanton in the Elite Hurdle in November.It will be perfect for him.Nicholls doubled up when Emerging Talent comfortably took the Racing UK Profits Returned To Racing National Hunt Novices Hurdle.Ridden by 5lb claimer Harry Cobden to offset some of his double penalty, the 5-6 favourite cruised into the lead after jumping two out from the pace-setting Bun Doran.He just had to be pushed out to hold Kerrow by three lengths with Bun Doran fading 20 lengths back into third. I knew I ran him too quick at Cheltenham when I saw him in the paddock. Hes done well since. This was a different race but hes had a nice run round and I expect youll see him back here at Wincanton in the Elite Hurdle in November. It will be perfect for him. Paul Nicholls Movewiththetimes (11-4) gave Nicholls a hat-trick when making a winning debut in division one of the Collects Points, Go Racing With Rewards4Racing Standard Open National Hunt Flat Race.The JP McManus-owned newcomer was delivered with precision by Sam Twiston-Davies to tackle Tom Georges Cruiseaweigh and come out on top by three-quarters of a length after a prolonged tussle in the straight.It was a similar story in division two with Capitaine (7-4 favourite) completing the foursome when defeating Minella For Me, also from the George stable, by 13 lengths to give Twiston-Davies a double.Nicholls confirmed his determination to retain the title by sending plenty of runners to the West Country meetings during the week before going all out for the finale at Sandown on Saturday, which Nicholls feels will be crucial.Weve got plenty to run during the week at the smaller meetings in the West Country, he told Racing UK.At the end of the day it comes down to what happens at Sandown on Saturday. There are a couple of Grade Ones there and they are usually the races that decides. Well just have to see what happens on Saturday.Weve got Southfield Theatre in the bet365 Gold Cup and hes probably spearheading next weekend. He wants good ground and hasnt had it for a while.Ill sit down and see what I can enter. Dodging Bullets will have an entry. There are some nice novice handicaps.Nicholls revealed Sir Alex Ferguson, a friend and owner at the yard, contacted him following his triumph in Scotland.Hes a great man and sent me a wonderful text last night on the way home. He loved it all, he said.Were just going to keep doing what weve been doing. Well keep running the horses in the right races and hope results go our way.Next Saturday is going to be a big day. Sky Racing Tickets Fast, secure racing tickets: Exclusive racing offers near you                                                        Also See: Live results service Full racecards Get Sky Sports Nike Air Force 1 High Pas Cher . His apology came before a pregame ceremony in which the team honoured its 2004 team that won Bostons first World Series championship since 1918. "I realize that I behaved bad in Boston," Ramirez said. Air Force 1 Low Femme Pas Cher . Thats exactly what happened. And they enjoyed every moment. Durant remained sizzling with 33 points, Serge Ibaka added 22 and the Thunder roared back from an abysmal start -- they trailed 22-4 early -- to embarrass the Miami Heat 112-95 on Wednesday night, erasing that big deficit out of the gate by outscoring the two-time defending champions by 43 points over a 33-minute span. . He says he will have the operation Wednesday and be ready in time for training camp in September. Bernier missed five games in March due to the injury.MONTREAL -- Josh Gorges feels the Canadiens need a little extra grit. Montreal played uninspired hockey for the better part of three periods in their 2-1 shootout loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night. The Canadiens (9-8-2) had taken only 13 shots after two periods, many of which werent terribly difficult for Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop to deal with. Bishop made 28 saves on the night for Tampa Bay (13-5-0). "We caught ourselves chasing, we werent supporting the play, we werent supporting the puck," said Gorges. "When you do that, you just end up skating all over the place. "If you dont play with that extra grit, that intensity, jumping onto loose pucks, being first on pucks, thats what happens." Captain Brian Gionta agreed: "We had nothing, we didnt create anything." The Canadiens didnt generate much offence for the first two periods, but were kept in the game by Carey Price, who made 44 saves on the night, including six in overtime. "That was a big performance by Carey Price," said head coach Michel Therrien. "Carey gave us a chance to stick in the game." It was a gut-check for Tampa Bay, which lost Steven Stamkos on Monday. The all-star forward and league-leading scorer broke his right tibia in the Lightnings 3-0 loss to the Boston Bruins. "It was obviously a tough loss whenever you lose a player like that," said Bishop after Tuesdays game. "This is a team sport and were going to move forward. The guys played great tonight. We couldve easily won this game or we couldve easily scored more goals. "Carey Price played a great game but we hung in there until the end and a big goal by Fil in the shootout." Down 1-0 going into the third, and on the back of big saves by Price, Montreal found some momentum and some of that extra grit. They blocked 15 shots and scored once on 13 shots in the third period. Briere was credited with the equalizer at 15:22 of the third when Max Paciorettys shot went off his thigh and in. "After the first two periods, Michel (Therrien) told us to go to the net a lot more," said Briere. "There were a lot of shots where there was nobody in front of the net. "On my goal, thats what I tried to do. I tried to go to the net. It was a good play by Pacioretty too to try to hit me like that." Briere was back in the Canadiens lineup for the first time since suffering a concussion on Oct. Air Force 1 Basse Homme. 19. The 36-year-old, who missed 10 games, played on a line with Michael Bournival and Rene Bourque. "My performance got better as the game went on," said Briere. "In the first, Ill admit, I was a little nervous, a little disorganized. In the second, I was more comfortable. In the third, we got good scoring chances. I calmed down a little bit." Ryan Malone put Tampa Bay on the scoreboard at 5:00 of the first when he deflected an Eric Brewer shot from the point. Malone, who was shoved by Canadiens defenceman Douglas Murray seconds before Brewers shot, deflected the puck while falling to the ice. The goal was his third of the season. Montreal couldnt take advantage of three power-play opportunities in the first period. They finished the game 0 for 3 with the man advantage. The Habs, who were outshot 13-5 in the second, dodged a bullet late in the period when Radko Gudas beat Price with a shot from the point. The goal was disallowed when video replay suggested Tyler Johnson had obstructed Price on the play. After Briere tied the game, Montreal took a minor penalty late in the period, and another early in overtime, but Tampa Bay couldnt beat Price on the power play. Valtteri Filppula scored the only goal in the shootout. "We didnt compete hard enough to get success for two periods," said Therrien. "To be able to score some goals, you have to compete. This is not what we did, honestly. We created some momentum in the third because we had some urgency, but Im not impressed." Tampa Bay was without leading goal-scorer Steven Stamkos, who broke his right leg after crashing into the net against the Bruins on Monday. Stamkos underwent surgery Tuesday afternoon and is expected to miss several months of play. Rookie J.T. Brown, who was recalled from Syracuse (AHL) after Stamkos injury, recorded one shot in 14:37 of ice time. Brown played five NHL games with the Lightning in 2012. Notes: The Canadiens have only won once in their last six games. They beat the New York Islanders 4-2 on Sunday. a David Desharnais and George Parros were both healthy scratches. a Defender Alexei Emelin, who has yet to play this season, is expected to dress over the weekend. Emelin underwent knee surgery last May. a The Lightning are first in the Atlantic division. a Montreal heads to Columbus to play the Blue Jackets on Friday. ' ' '

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