Nicholls happy with star duo

  • Last Updated: February 21 2014, 19:21 GMT

Paul Nicholls' two big Cheltenham hopes Silviniaco Conti and Big Buck's enjoyed a "good day out" as the pair took another step in their preparations with a post-race gallop at Exeter.

Silviniaco Conti: Went well at Exeter
Silviniaco Conti: Went well at Exeter

The trainer had a smile on his face as he watched his star names complete a circuit of the Devon course together and pass the post in synchrony.

King George hero Silviniaco Conti was ridden by Noel Fehily, his scheduled partner in the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup, while Harry Derham was aboard Big Buck's, who suffered his first British defeat over hurdles at Cheltenham last month but is very much on course to challenge for a fifth Ladbrokes World Hurdle next month.

Moving easily, the pair were always ahead of three other Nicholls runners ahead of Exeter's Cheltenham preview evening.

Nicholls said: "It was a good day out for them and I'm very pleased.

"They went steady for two miles and quickened up for the final furlong. It was just what they needed before Cheltenham and it all went to plan."

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