Grand National Trends To Consider Before Placing Your Bet
A maximum field will go to post for the 2022 Randox Grand National at Aintree but which of the 40 contenders that line up at 5.15pm have the strongest claims?
We’ve picked apart the most important trends for Saturday’s blue-riband event and applied them to this year’s runners. The end result is a 16/1 chance with the best betting sites who has rock-solid credentials.
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The Most Important Grand National Trends
Age - Stick to Horses Aged Between 8 and 11
This is a really easy way to strip back several of the runners because age is really important. Only one horse older than 11 (Amberleigh House in 2004) has won the race this century while you have to go all the way back to 1940 to find the last winner aged younger than eight. The last six winners were aged eight or nine.
Weight - The Bigger the Weight, the Tougher the task
Having to carry a big weight is a real burden, even for the classiest of runners. No horse has carried top weight to Grand National glory since Red Rum in 1974.
Furthermore, only seven horses have carried more than 11st 5lb to victory since 1945, including Many Clouds in 2015. This is bad news for the likes of Delta Work (11st 8lb) and Any Second Now (11st 7lb), who are both near the top of the market.
Six of the last nine winners carried no more than 10st 13lb, which brings into the reckoning the likes of Enjoy D'Allen (10st 10lb) and recent market mover Snow Leopardess (10st 8lb), although the last named isn’t favoured by history - the last mare to win the Grand National was Nickel Coin way back in 1951.
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Proven Race Fitness - Avoid Horses That have Been Off the Track for Two Months Or More
28 of the last 29 Grand National winners ran within the previous 55 days, while 23 of the last 29 ran within 34 days.
That’s a strong stat and one that confirms that race fitness is crucial when picking out your Grand National bets.
Two high-profile contenders that fail to meet this criterion are last year’s winner Minella Times, although he’ll struggle under his big weight anyway, and owner-mate Enjoy D’allen who hasn’t been seen since the Dublin Racing Festival in early February.
Class Counts - Stick With Horses That Have Graded Form In the Book
All bar one of the Grand National winners this century had previously been at least placed in Graded company, whether that be over hurdles or fences.
Longhouse Poet and Fiddlerontheroof both fulfil this criterion, indeed the latter was a Grade 1-winning novice hurdler.
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Aintree Experience - Don’t Lose Sleep Over It!
The Grand National has changed over the years, not least the fences which are significantly easier to jump nowadays.
That probably explains why 11 of the last 13 Grand National winners were having their first run in this unique race.
Not having run in a previous Grand National also means avoiding an inevitable ratings hike despite being beaten. Last year’s first, third and fifth are all racing off higher marks this year - which makes their task much more difficult.
Check out the best horse racing betting sites that are offering price boosts, extra each-way places & much more on the Grand National!
Bred For The Job - Irish Bred Horses Have a Strong Record
Irish bred horses have won 16 of the last 21 editions of the world’s most famous race. Obviously, not all of them were trained in Ireland but Irish bred horses are born to jump and stay, the two most important characteristics required for Aintree glory.
The one horse that fits the key trends criteria is LONGHOUSE POET who has the added lustre of being trained by a man that knows what is required to win this race after Numbersixvalverde’s 2006 victory.
Longhouse Poet is in the right age bracket and his most recent outing was 46 days ago, which ties in nicely with the proven race fitness trend.
The Irish-bred 8-year-old, who was Grade 1 placed as a hurdler, is developing into quite a talented staying chaser and his ability to jump fluently and economically will stand him in good stead over the Aintree fences. The fact that he's not been around Aintree before is of no material concern.
He’s already won a big staying handicap chase this year having stayed on strongly to land the Thyestes Chase at Gowran Park and, under 11st 4lb, he appears to have a great chance of striking once again.
It is also noteworthy that Martin Brassil’s gelding has attracted support in recent days. He’s a general 16/1 chance as things stand.
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