Coral Scottish Grand National Stats Guide
The Coral Scottish Grand National takes centre stage at Ayr on Saturday, April 18th, and the stats suggest the the Alan King trained Sego Success has major claims of bagging the valuable prize.
Here’s our guide to the leading trends for the stamina sapping test, which is run over 4m 110 yards and sees runners tackle 27 fences:
Hello Bud (2009) and Merigo (2010) won the race as 11-year-old’s, and that augurs well for the chances of leading local hope Lie Forrit.
Eight of the last 10 runnings have been won by horses between the ages of seven and 10, and three of the last five runnings have been run by nine year olds.
Godsmejudge become the first in 12 years to win at the age of seven in 2013, and his stable companion Sego Success will be bidding to follow in his footsteps.
No jockey has dominated the race, but Wayne Hutchinson partnered Godsmedjudge to win in 2013 and finish runner-up last year. He is set to partner Sego Success.
Champion jockey AP McCoy has won the race just once in his illustrious career, aboard Belmont King in 1997, and is likely to partner Irish raider Yes Tom unless the weights rise and allow him to be on board Catching On trained by his boss Jonjo O’Neill.
No horse has won back-to-back runnings of the contest since Androma in 1984/85. That is not good for supporters of last year’s winner Al Co, who is backed to defend his crown.
The Peter Bowen trained gelding also hasn’t had the ideal prep for the race having fallen at the first in the Crabbie’s Grand National at Aintree which is run just seven days before this contest.
No favourite has won since Paris Pike 2000. There have been just three winners below 10/1 since 2003, who were all sent off 15/2, and there have been some shock results with Iris De Balme winning at 66/1 and Al Co triumphing last year at 40/1.
Champion trainer Paul Nicholls won the race in 1997 with Belmont King, but has drew a blank since despite saddling over 20 runners. His Sam Winner is due to shoulder top weight in ths year’s renewal.
Nigel Twiston-Davis has been successful three times, courtesy of Captain Dibble (1992), Earth Summit (1994) and Hello Bud (2009). He has two entries this year in Benbens and Cogry.
Leading Scottish handler Lucinda Russell has dreamed of winning the race for a long time, and came closest to doing so when Kerry Lads finished runner-up to Grey Abbey in 2004. She has laid out Lie Forrit for this year’s running.
Alan King saddled Godsmejudge to win in 2013 and finish runner-up in 2014, and the Barbury Castle handler has just one entry in this year’s renewal – Sego Success.
Nine of the last 12 winners carried 10st 6lb or less and horses out of the handicap have won three of the last 10. Sego Success is set to carry 10st 5lb, while Cogry is very interesting from out of the weights on 9st 13lb given his trainers’ record in the race.
Only one horse, Godsmejudge in 2013, has carried over 11st to victory in the last decade. That’s not good news for top weight Sam Winner (11st 12lb) and Houblon Des Obeaux (11st 9lb).