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Aintree latest: 2015 Grand National news round-up

| 06.04.2015

Nicholls Grand National team reduced to four
Champion trainer Paul Nicholls has reduced his Crabbie’s Grand National squad to four, after ruling Benvolio out of the Aintree showpiece.

The gelding is now likely to line up with stablemate Sam Winner, who was declared a non-starter for the National yesterday by Nicholls, in the Coral sponsored Scottish equivalent at Ayr later this month.

Nicholls tweeted: “Benvolio is going to miss Aintree this year and go to Ayr for Scottish Grand National on the [April] 18th if the ground is soft enough.”

The champion trainer still has a powerful team for the £1 million showpiece on Saturday, April 11th, with leading contenders Rocky Creek and Unioniste joined by Rebel Rebellion and Mon Parrain.

Treadwell booked to partner Monbeg Dude
Herefordshire-based trainer Michael Scudamore has secured the services of former Grand National-winning jockey Liam Treadwell to partner Monbeg Dude in this year’s renewal.

Treadwell gave 100-1 shot Mon Mome a peach of a ride to land the big race in 2009, and in Monbeg Dude has a partner who ran a cracker in the contest last year when seventh to Pineau De Re.

The 10-year-old has not won this season, but has run with great credit in defeat on several occasions and is a past winner of the Coral Welsh National.

Scudamore said: “All being well, Liam will ride him and we’re delighted. He has a good experience around the track and if he can produce the goods like he did on Mon Mome, that would be great.”

Monbeg Dude is currently a 33/1 shot with Coral.

Bowen seals ride on Mon Parrain
Young jockey Sean Bowen, who has been a rising star in the sport this season, clinched an all-important 10th win over fences on Virak at Haydock on Saturday to qualify for the mount on Mon Parrain in the Grand National.

The leading conditional admitted he had been getting frustrated about reaching the target, but is now excited at the prospect of his first ride in the extended 3m 3f contest at Aintree on the Paul Nicholls trained gelding.

“I’ve been waiting for that for a while, but I’m glad I’ve got it and hopefully Mon Parrain will be a good spin in the National,” said Bowen.

“Thanks to Paul for giving me the chances to ride these horses and it’s great to get my 10 winners over fences. It will be great to ride in the National, that was a target.”

Mon Parrain, who was partnered to victory by Bowen on his penultimate start at Cheltenham and finished runner-up to Always Waining in the 2011 running of the Topham over the National fences, is 40/1 with Coral to win Aintree’s showpiece race.

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David Metcalf

A lifelong Manchester United supporter, David has over 25 years’ experience in the media industry having worked for regional and national newspapers. He is a huge horse racing, football and greyhound fan and has done interviews on various radio and TV stations, including talkSPORT and Sky Sports, whilst working as a PR front man for a betting firm. David has also written for most of the top Premier League football fan websites, and produced a Cheltenham Festival guide with former eight-times champion national hunt jockey Peter Scudamore, MBE, after helping him to set up a syndicate for his trainer son Michael.