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2016 Grand National runner profile: Unioniste

David Metcalf | April 1, 2016

Coral’s horse racing experts profile all 40 entrants in the 2016 Crabbie’s Grand National, the most prestigious steeplechase of the National Hunt season.

Unioniste

Age: 8
Weight: 10st 8lb

Owner: John Hales

Grand National Record:
2012 NEPTUNE COLLONGES (WON)
2015 Unioniste (FELL 5th)

Trainer: Paul Nicholls

Ascot

Grand National Record:
1992 Just So (6th)
1996 Vicompt De Valmont (10th), Deep Bramble (PU 29th), Brackenfield (UR 19th)
1997 Straight Talk (Fell 14th)
1998 What A Hand (Fell 1st), Court Melody (Fell 6th), General Crack (PU 11th)
1999 Strong Chairman (15th), Double Thriller (Fell 1st)
2000 Earthmover (Fell 4th), Torduff Express (Fell 13th), Flaked Oats (Fell 20th), Escartefigue (UR 30th)
2001 Earthmover (Fell 4th)
2002 Murt’s Man (PU 17th), Ad Hoc (BD 27th)
2003 Montifault (5th), Fadalko (UR 6th), Ad Hoc (UR 19th), Shotgun Willy (PU 22nd), Torduff Express (UR 27th)
2004 Exit To Wave (PU 9th);
2005 Royal Auclair (2nd), Heros Collonges (8th), L’Aventure (15th), Ad Hoc (Fell 22nd)
2006 Royal Auclair (Fell 1st), Le Duc (UR 8th), Silver Birch (Fell 15th), Heros Collonges (UR 15th), Le Roi Miguel (PU 19th), Cornish Rebel (PU 19th)
2007 Le Duc (UR 6th), Royal Auclair (Fell 9th), Eurotrek (PU bef 22nd), Thisthatandtother (PU 30th)
2008 Cornish Sett (12th), Turko (Fell 25th), Mr Pointment (PU 30th)
2009 My Will (3rd), Big Fella Thanks (6th), Cornish Sett (17th), Eurotrek (PU 17th)
2010 Big Fella Thanks (4th), Tricky Trickster (9th), My Will (Fell 4th), Nozic (UR 20th)
2011 Niche Market (5th), Ornais (Fell 4th), The Tother One (Fell 6th), What A Friend (PU 27th)
2012 NEPTUNE COLLONGES (WON)
2013 Join Together (12th), What A Friend (PU 19th), Harry The Viking (PU 26th)
2014 Rocky Creek (5th), Hawkes Point (18th), Tidal Bay (UR 8th)
2015 Mon Parrain (11th), Rocky Creek (17th), Rebel Rebellion (PU 26th), Unioniste (FELL 5th)

Form

2422165/113114/31838/613F8-80312

Unioniste was quietly fancied for last year’s Grand National, but got no further than the fifth. He has won six of 20 starts over fences for current connections, most recently taking the Ivan Straker Memorial Chase at Kelso in February.

Unioniste_alt

The gelding was last seen out at the same course when a highly creditable staying-on 10-length runner-up to Many Clouds in the Listed Premier Chase on March 13th.

Trainer Paul Nicholls and owner John Hales combined to win the Grand National with another grey, Neptune Collonges, by a nose in 2012.

Unioniste is also half-brother to My Will, who finished third to Mom Mome in 2009 Grand National, and is bidding to become the fourth grey to win the contest

The most recent grey to win was Neptune Collonges in 2012. Before that were Nicolaus Silver (1961) and The Lamb (1868 and 1871).

Jumps race record

Unioniste is a consistent sort laden with stamina and boasts a healthy strike rate of 25 per cent. He has also won or finished in the frame on half of his starts over the obstacles and is versatile as regards going having won on ground ranging from good to heavy.

Starts: 28
Wins: 7
2nd: 3
3rd: 4
Career win and place prize money: £213,981

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