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About Tom:

Tom Scudamore is a third-generation British flat and steeplechase jockey. He is the son of eight-time champion jockey Peter Scudamore; his grandfather Michael won the Grand National on Oxo in 1959. Tom provides Coral with all the latest insight and thoughts on his next rides.

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Scudamore says Grand Chieftain has a big chance in the Coral Scottish Grand National

David runs Top Wood in the Coral Scottish Grand National tomorrow at Ayr. He’s a lively outsider. He’s not the most consistent but he’s an in and out performer. He was running a good race when he came to grief in the Kim Muir at Cheltenham. He’s got to bounce back from a disappointing run last time at Kelso. You can find bits and pieces in his form that would give him a chance but in all honestly he has a lot do if he is to win it.

It’s a really competitive renewal of the race this year. The likes of Cause of Causes and Alvarado who couldn’t get into the Grand National at Aintree are increasing the quality of the race which is fantastic. It’s always been a very good race but it’s getting more competitive and harder to win with each passing year.

If I’d have been able to ride, I would have had the choice between Top Wood and Golden Chieftain. If he would have stood up at the last fence, Golden Chieftain would have won the Midlands Grand National last time. I think he has a big chance tomorrow if he can reproduce that form. It’s a wide open race though.

With the recent Gigginstown record in these staying races, they surely can’t do the hat-trick, can they? It would be an amazing achievement if they did.

Paul Nicholls runs two horses in the Scottish Champion Hurdle tomorrow, Some Plan and Connetable. He’ll be desperate to try and get as much prize money on the board as possible in his pursuit of the Trainers’ Championship where he is currently second behind Willie Mullins. With only a week left in the season now, Paul has to really win these big races. He’ll be throwing plenty at it.

I am not sure I agree with the way the Trainers’ Championship is won. The Jockeys’ Championship is done on numbers and not prize money. I believe the Championships should determine the whole thing, week in and week out. It should all be about consistency. The Champion Trainer should be the one who has been the most consistent and it should not matter if they are a training a winner at Cheltenham or Ffos Las.

In the 4.45pm at Ayr, David saddles Mango Cap. He’s been disappointing since coming over from France. He has to do better than he has shown so far. He had some decent form over there.  He’s got some form with Affaire D’Honneur who has been running really well in some of the top class 2m handicap hurdles this season. I wouldn’t all be surprised to see an improved performance from Mango Cap. I think everything will suit him and I’d like to see him start delivering over here.

Impulsive American runs in the 5.20pm for David. He’s pretty exposed as he has had a really good year. He’s a young horse though who looks to be improving all the time. He’ll like the conditions up at Ayr. He prefers top of the ground as oppose to the soft ground. He’s been running well all winter, it is just a question of whether the handicapper has got hold of him.

Over at Bangor, Obistar is set to run for David in the 4.30pm. He ran ok last time at Ffos Las which was an improvement on his Chepstow run but generally his form has been disappointing as of late. The winner got away from him at Ffos Las but he ran well. He should like Bangor and the more rain for him there, the better.

Sadly, I am out of action at the moment. I had a bad fall just after Cheltenham but I did come back for Aintree. I’ve had three falls in succession and I’ve just aggregated an injury.  It’s an accumulation of the falls. A few things will just take some time to heal. I’ll be back in time for Punchestown. I might even return at some stage at the back end of next week.

It’s really frustrating. I’ve missed the best part of three months this season through injuries and suspensions but that’s the way it goes sometimes. I have been lucky to ride some good horses so that cheers you up a bit.

Tom