Horse Racing - Four-timer for Nicholls at Cheltenham

Champion trainer Paul Nicholls had a memorable day at Cheltenham as he saddled a four-timer.

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Trainer Paul Nicholls at Wincanton Racecourse, Somerset.

Zarkandar landed the Grade Two International Hurdle after earlier wins for Unioniste, Shooters Wood and Far West.

The 6/5 favourite, under Ruby Walsh, held on by two lengths from Grandouet.

A classy card will give clues for next March's Festival at Prestbury Park and bookies Zarkandar cut for the Champion Hurdle after the victory.

Earlier, Unioniste - a 15/2 chance - took the £100,000 Paul Stewart IronSpine Charity Challenge Gold Cup under conditional jockey Harry Derham, the nephew of Nicholls, by 11 lengths from Walkon.

But the Ditcheat stable did not yield victory in the other two feature races.

The 11/10 favourite Coneygree won the Grade Two Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle by six lengths from Aerial to consolidate his position at the head of the betting for the Novices' Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.

And 1/5 favourite Oscar Whisky retained the Relkeel Hurdle by romping to a cosy victory over Crack Away Jack for Nicky Henderson. Barry Geraghty's mount is now a best-priced 14/1 for the Champion Hurdle.

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