Teaforthree the big Welsh hope in Crabbie’s Grand National
Teaforthree is the current 10/1 favourite with Coral for the Crabbie’s Grand National, and looks to hold outstanding claims of becoming the first Welsh-trained winner of the race since 1905.
The gelding ran a stormer to finish third in last year’s contest behind Auroras Encore, where he was beaten 9 1/4 lengths on his first try over the Aintree fences.
The 10-year-old raced up with the pace throughout that day, and after jumping well led at the second last before being headed at the final fence and being unable to find a change of gear on the run-in.
He is set to run off 2lb lower this year, and goes into the contest on the back of some solid runs.
Trained in Pembrokeshire by Rebecca Curtis, he ran really well when runner-up to Restless Harry over an inadequate 3m at Ascot and then shaped well for a long way when coming home eighth in then Cheltenham Gold Cup where he ran better than the 21 lengths he was beaten suggests.
That was just his third run this season in a campaign which has solely been geared around the National, and he looks to have been brought along to perfection to peak on the big day.
The son of Oscar also has some excellent form to his name in previous seasons which suggest he is a worthy market leader for the National on Saturday, April 5th.
He showed he was all about stamina when successful in the 4m Terry Biddlecombe National Hunt Chase at the Cheltenham Festival in 2012, and ran a blinder when a 1/2 length runner-up to Monbeg Dude in the Welsh National over 3m 6f at Chepstow a year a later.
The Michael Scudamore-trained winner was receiving 16lb that day, and Teaforthree is set to meet that rival on 13lb better terms at Aintree.
That should be enough to see him turn the tables, and he looks to have a lovely racing weight of 10st 12lb as he bids to become the first Welsh-trained winner of the race since Kirkland over a century ago.
He will once again be partnered in the 4m 4f marathon test by Nick Scholfield, who gave him such a superb ride in the race 12 months ago.
He has had just five rides in the race so far, and managed to complete on three occasions.