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Grand National 2019: Everything you need to know

| 03.04.2019
CORAL ENHANCED ACCAS

What is Grand National? Why is it special?

The Grand National is a National Hunt horse race run at Aintree with a history that can be traced all the way back to 1839. It remains one of best-loved races of its kind and enjoys a world-wide audience. The most valuable jumps race run in Europe, there’s a prize fund of £1m, which attracts the best and brightest names in the sport. Coral offers the best each-way betting for Grand National. Place an each-way bet and collect if your horse finishes in the first 6! 

Where is Grand National 2019?

This year’s Grand National will be held, as always, at Aintree Racecourse in Liverpool, England.

When is Grand National 2019?

When is the Grand National on? This year’s race will be run on the afternoon of Saturday 6 April.

What time is the Grand National On?

The National carried a mid-afternoon start time for many years but it was recently moved to a slot later in the day to ensure a greater level of exposure on a busy day of sports. This year’s renewal has an advertised start time of 17:15 GMT.

Where to watch the Grand National?

Live coverage of the Grand National is shown all over the world. UK viewers can follow the race in its entirety on ITV and Racing TV. Coverage includes expert previews and commentary.

How many horses run­ in the Grand National?

Modern fields usually consist of 40 runners and this year’s renewal is expected to show a similar number of entrants following the final declarations stage. Of the 40 involved last year, only 12 managed to finish the race.

Who is the biggest price winner in the Grand National?

The Grand National is a race famous for producing big priced winners but the best of them so far has been 100/1. The history books show five previous winners with that treble-figure price tag, Mon Mome being  the most recent of them when scoring for Liam Treadwell and Venetia Williams in 2009.

Which horse has won the most Grand Nationals?

The most successful Grand National horse is the great Red Rum who won three races, scooping glory in 1973 and 1974 before returning to record his most impressive victory when completing the hat-trick in 1977.

Which jockey has won the most Grand Nationals?

George Stevens is the Grand National’s leading jockey with five titles to his name. The first came in 1856 when winning on Freetrader and was followed in 1863 with Emblem, 1864 Emblematic, 1869 and 1870 on The Colonel.

Which trainer has won the most Grand Nationals?

The leading trainer prize is a three-way split, with George Dockeray, Fred Rimmell and Ginger McCain all tied on four titles. The most recent of them was Amberleigh House in 2004 for McCain.

How many people watch the Grand National around the world?

The 2019 Grand National will be watched by an estimated 600 million people in over 140 countries around the world. There’s also live radio coverage and commentary at Coral.

How many fences are jumped in the Grand National?

30 fences stand between the Grand National field and a champion and they are tackled over two laps. The most famous of them is The Chair which stands at five-feet two inches tall and has resulted in a number of fallers over the years.

How long is the Grand National?

The race has an official distance of four miles and 514 yards, or 6.907km.

How do I get tickets to the Grand National?

Tickets are often in short supply with many snapped up well in advance. A number of reputable sites sell tickets and hospitality, including The Jockey Club.

What is the prize money?

Winner – £500,000

2nd – £200,000

3rd – £100,000

4th – £65,000

5th – £40,000

6th – £30,000

7th – £20,000

8th – £15,000

9th – £10,000

10th – £5,000

Race course etiquette

There is no firm dress code for attending the Aintree Grand National, but spectators are expected to be smartly dressed. Fashion and finery is often the focus of the crowds, with hats frequently worn. Sports clothes and fancy dress are not permitted.

Who won the grand national last year?

The 2018 Grand National was won by Tiger Roll at a starting price of 10/1. He was well-supported in the antepost betting markets and headed the list for large parts of the build-up, but he didn’t go off as favourite. Total Recall went to post as jolly but failed to see out the trip, pulled up by jockey Paul Townend two out following a few costly errors that saw him weaken.

The victor scored under the ride of pilot Davy Russell, representing trainer Gordon Elliott. He came home ahead of runner-up Pleasant Company who was beaten a head in a two-horse fight to the finish, Bless The Wings was third, a further 11 lengths behind.

Last year’s win means Elliott has now won two Grand Nationals, with the other coming back in 2007 thanks to Silver Birch and Robbie Power. It was Davy Russell’s first visit to the winner’s enclosure in this contest, but the Irishman hopes it’ll open the door for more success in the years to come. Tiger Roll recorded a time of nine minutes and 40 seconds and carried 10st 13lbs, the heaviest since Neptune Collonges in 2012.

Owned by the Gigginstown House Stud, it was their second ever Grand National win, but both have come in the last three years, Rule The World getting them off the mark in 2016 for David Mullins and Mouse Morris off an SP 33/1. Gigginstown-owned Grand National horses are sure to be popular with punters again this year, especially those who follow the clues given by the trends.

Tiger Roll Grand National Winner

Keith Donoghue riding Tiger Roll (maroon) running in The Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Steeple Chase at Cheltenham Racecourse, 2018

Winner trends

There are many strategies adopted my punters looking at how to bet on the Grand National. Many like to rely on the race trends when making their Grand National predictions, looking for clues from past winners, including age, owners, weight and trainers.

Perhaps the most important trend to keep in mind when betting on this race is that favourites have poor form in the Grand National, which makes taking a chance on one or two at a bigger price easier to do. The last winning favourite was Don’t Push It for Tony McCoy and Jonjo O’Neill back in 2010 but even then, he was a joint-fav.

The last stand alone jolly was Hedgehunter in 2005 when scoring off a starting price of 7/1. Ruby Walsh sat in the saddle that day, doing the steering for trainer Willie Mullins. Each of the last 10 winners have boasted double-figure odds, with the lowest of them being Tiger Roll last year and Don’t Push It at 10/1. The biggest on that list was Mon Mome at 100/1 in 2009.

It may also be useful to know that two of the last five Grand National champions have been priced at 25/1, that price shared by Pineau De Re in 2014 and Many Clouds 12 months later. 14 National winners have also carried the 25/1 price.

There has been a range of winning ages over the years, but eight-year-olds seem to be in form at the minute and have been responsible for three of the last four champions, including each of the last two. The eight-year-old age was shared by Many Clouds in 2015, One For Arthur 2017 and Tiger Roll 12 months ago.

Going back further and we notice the last decade has given us winners covering eight, nine, 10 and 11-year-olds. The breakdown is settled at three wins for eight-year-olds, three wins for 11-year-olds, two wins for nine-year-olds and a couple of 10-year-olds.

Gordon Elliott was responsible for training Tiger Roll and that was his second success in the last 12 years, with the other being Silver Birch in 2007.

Many Clouds won carrying a weight of 11st 9lbs but that was the only Grand National winner to be above the 11st mark in the last six years. Since Many Clouds scored, we’ve had Rule The World at 10st 7lbs, One For Arthur at 10st 11lbs and Tiger Roll who crossed the line with 10st 13lbs added.

Other positives to look out for when placing your Grand National bets this year are horses that have won or placed in a National of any type in the past. This might include runners who have claimed the Scottish National, Irish National or Welsh National. This is a testing trip and experience counts double, in term of similar trip, running in big fields and the fences.

Luck of the Irish. It’s well worth remembering Irish-bred and Irish-trained horses have an impressive record in the Grand National and are always popular with punters. Irish jockeys aren’t easily overlooked in this race either.

Horses that failed to place in previous Grand Nationals shouldn’t immediately be written off as, with the experience of the day under their belt, they often come on for the introduction. Distance is always crucial and if an entrant hasn’t yet run over three miles, it’s probably not worth risking it. Mares don’t have the best record either and going for front runners and those who like to be prominent helps as it improves their chances of being hampered by the large field.

A few things to avoid are runners aged younger than eight or older than 13. Past Grand National winners often don’t fare well when trying to repeat the feat and that will put a few off taking the short price available about last year’s champion Tiger Roll. It’s a gruelling trip on testing ground, so be wary of those who were pushed to their limits at Prestbury Park last month

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Author

Frank Monkhouse