The last of the major Grand Nationals sees the Scottish version take centre stage this weekend. Twenty-seven obstacles need jumping over a trip of four miles, plus some change. The recent inclement weather in Scotland means soft, and maybe even heavy terrain will be encountered so finding a mud lover, with strong staying prowess is the order of the day.
With 40 runners in each year’s Grand National finding the winner is as much to do with luck as skill. So many runners mean luck in running is going to be at a premium and that’s before you factor in the unique test the Liverpool course has to offer. 30 fences in total must be jumped, some, like Becher’s Brook which is a real test for a horse.
With 40 runners in each year’s Grand National finding the winner is as much to do with luck as skill. So many runners mean luck in running is going to be at a premium and that’s before you factor in the unique test the Liverpool course has to offer. 30 fences in total must be jumped, some, like Becher’s Brook which are a real test for a horse. So many runners over such a demanding course makes finding the winner of the Grand National a tough task but there’re some key stats and trends which will narrow down the 40 big field.
2.00 Aintree – Rose Appeal Supports Alder Hey Top Novices´ Hurdle
Only five go to post and it’s all about My Tent Or Yours who is your short odds-on favourite. His form and sheer quality is above anything in this field and he’ll prove tough to beat.
We move into the final day of the four day meeting and with heavy rain forecast I think we’ll need plenty of luck in finding a winner or two. A heavy down pour(s) could force a going change so you may have to adjust your bets throughout the day in the hope of getting ahead. We have two of the most competitive handicaps of the year on this card so don’t be surprised if you draw a blank, just like yesterday.
Run on Gold Cup day on the New Course, the Albert Bartlett Novice Hurdle is a severe test of stamina for a young horse. Any kinks in staying power will be found out so finding a horse that stays is key. Given previous winners like Weapons Amnesty (2009), Wichita Lineman (2007) and Bobs Worth (2011) went on to prove their worth over fences looking for a horse of stature should help in terms of indicating staying power.
1.30 Cheltenham – Jewson Novices´ Chase
A race that revolves around David Pipe’s classy grey, Dynaste. One of the festival big talking horses, there was much debate about where he was to run. He ditched the RSA to run here and it was the right call for me.
With the defection of the three time champion Big Bucks due to injury, we have the most open looking World Hurdle in years. In fact, you’d have to go back to 2006 when Alan King’s My Way De Solzen scored to get any resemblance of an open looking Stayer’s Hurdle. This year’s race is shaping up to be the most competitive renewal in a decade.
The Ryanair Chase was added to the festival back in 2005 and the race has been a welcome addition for me. The intermediate trip of two miles five furlongs gives top class chasers, who find two miles too sharp and three miles plus too taxing, an out in a quality event.
The presence of Sprinter Sacre means eight other entries have been received for the 2013 Queen Mother Champion Chase. Odds of 2-7, best priced, can be obtained about the “Black Aeroplane” while he’s as short as 1-5 with a number of bookmakers. Those prices tell you all you need to know about Nicky Henderson’s sexy stable star.