"It's just been a tough year," says Nicky Henderson after 100th winner of the season

Thu 22 Apr 2021
Nicky Henderson pictured with Altior who will bid to get back to winning ways at Sandown on Saturday
Nicky Henderson pictured with Altior who will bid to get back to winning ways at Sandown on Saturday

His champion trainer crown has been taken by Paul Nicholls, but Nicky Henderson is already looking forward to next term after saddling his hundredth winner of the current campaign, which comes to a close on Saturday.

Pistol Whipped (2-1) brought up the century for the Seven Barrows handler at Perth on Thursday, scoring by 14 lengths under Nico de Boinville in the Thank You Phil Nelson River Tay Handicap Chase.

Henderson acknowledged it has been a far from straightforward season – but was still pleased to have got the landmark.

Speaking at Warwick, he said: “It hasn’t been the easiest season I must admit, because it started a bit late and we then had a difficult time after Christmas, so it’s nice to have got that done anyway.

“It’s testament to what everybody’s done because it’s been a tough year to be fair – things haven’t gone according to plan.

“Cheltenham was very good really, Aintree was good and there were two English horses that managed to win graded races at both and they were Shishkin and Chantry House.

“A lot of our other guys have been brilliant, but it’s just been a tough year. They were a bit out of sorts after Christmas and we had to sit and suffer for a while, but all’s well that ends well.

“Considering it’s been a short season it’s nice to get to the hundred and they’ve all done well. It hasn’t been easy, but it’s a nice thing to have got to.”

He added: “As I say, we’ve had easier years but we’ve got as good a lot of horses as we’ve ever had and some very smart youngsters – so next year’s going to be different.”

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