Wednesday, 20 November 2019

Grand National Jokes

grand national jokes
Grand National Gambling Tips

V-NECK 15/1 its always been a good jumper

“Foundation” 2nd Race. You can put your house on it

“Spearmint Gum”, although, no, that sticks to the rails.!

12-1 dusty carpet. It’s never been beaten.

Ironing Board, put your shirt on it.

Monday, 4 November 2019

Champion Hurdle Triple Winners

At the time of writing, Buveur D’Air stands on the cusp of greatness as he attempts to become the first horse since Istabraq, and just the sixth in all, to win the Champion Hurdle three times. His Timeform Annual Rating, of 167, is some way adrift of that awarded to the greatest hurdlers since the early Sixties, so we’ve reviewed the previous triple winners of the Champion Hurdle to see how they compare. Check out the Cheltenham Betting Guide for a more up-to-date take on this unmissable festival of racing.

Istabraq (1998, 1999, 2000)

Owned, like Buveur D’Air, by J.P. McManus, trained by Aidan O’Brien and ridden by Charlie Swan, Istabraq was awarded a Timeform Annual Rating of 180, alongside Monksfield and inferior, by 2lb, only to Night Nurse in the Timeform era. Having quickened clear for an impressive, 4-length win over Hors La Loi III in the millennium renewal of the Champion Hurdle, Istrabraq was denied the opportunity to defend his title – and attempt an unprecedented four-timer – after an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease forced the cancellation of the entire Cheltenham Festival in 2001. He did return for the Champion Hurdle the following year, but was pulled up before the third flight and never raced again.

See You Then (1985, 1986, 1987)

Beaten favourite in the Triumph Hurdle in 1984, See You Then was an ill-tempered, but fragile, gelding, who was rarely seen on the racecourse between his three Champion Hurdle victories. He was trained, like Buveur D’Air, by Nicky Henderson and ridden, on all three occasions, by Steve Smith-Eccles, who deputised for the injured John Francome in 1985 and kept the ride when Francome retired shortly afterwards. Despite limited racecourse appearances – between 1984/85 and 1986/87 he had just ten starts, winning eight of them – See You Then earned a Timeform Annual Rating of 173.

Persian War (1968, 1969, 1970)

Trained by Colin Davies and ridden to all three Champion Hurdle victories by Jimmy Utley, Persian War was awarded a Timeform Annual Rating of 179, 1lb inferior to Istabraq, and therefore fourth on the all-time list, according to the respected ratings organisation. The winner of the Triumph Hurdle in 1967, Persian War also finished second, beaten 4 lengths, behind Bula in the Champion Hurdle in 1971. Indeed, had he not been shuffled from pillar-to-post, among six trainers, by his owner Henry Alper, he nay have been even more successful.

Sir Ken (1952, 1953, 1954)

Trained by Willie Stephenson and ridden by Tim Molony – who also won the Champion Hurdle on Hatton’s Grace in 1951 – Sir Ken recorded his three successive victories in the Champion Hurdle in the period before Timeform ratings were published for National Hunt racing and, as such, is difficult to compare with different generations. Nevertheless, Sir Ken had the distinction of being returned at odds of 2/5 in 1953, making him the shortest-priced winner in the history of the Champion Hurdle.

Hatton’s Grace (1949, 1950, 1951)

Trained by Vincent O’Brien and ridden on the first two occasions by Aubrey Brabazon and on the last by Tim Molony, Hatton’s Grace was a plain, cheaply bought gelding, who didn’t see a racecourse until he was six years old and didn’t win the Champion Hurdle until he was nine. However, after an unlikely victory over the seemingly invincible National Spirit in 1949, he followed up in 1950 and in 1951, as an 11-year-old, became the first horse to complete a hat-trick in the Champion Hurdle. He remains one of just two horses of that age – the other being Sea Pigeon in 1981 – to win the Champion Hurdle.

Monday, 14 October 2019

Tiger Roll Roars to Victory in the 2018 Grand National

The 2018 Grand National was run on heavy going for the first time since 2001 when, in atrocious conditions, Red Marauder and Smarty were the only two of the 40 starters to complete the course unscathed. However, the 2018 renewal, run on a sunny afternoon, was a much kinder affair for all concerned and, in the absence of Regal Encore and Walk In The Mill, twelve of the 38 horses that eventually faced the starter completed the course.

Sadly, they did not include the well-supported Blaklion, who was mid-division when brought down at the first fence. Similarly, 7/1 favourite Total Recall made a series of catastrophic blunders and was, frankly, fortunate to survive as long as he did before being eased off and pulled up before the second last fence. All of the other fancied horses survived, including the diminutive Tiger Roll, fresh from victory in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase at the Cheltenham Festival, who was sent off at 10/1 joint second favourite alongside Cheltenham Gold Cup third Anibale Fly.

Indeed, halfway up the run-in, Tiger Roll took a clear, 6-length lead and looked poised for a comfortable victory, only to be pressed by the rallying Pleasant Company in the closing stages before holding on, all out to win by a head. Winning trainer Gordon Elliott also saddled the third home, 40/1 chance Bless The Wings, who finished 11 lengths further behind, and Tony Martin completed an Irish clean sweep of the first four places with Anibale Fly, who was just a neck behind. Milansbar, a 25/1 chance trained by Neil King and ridden by Bryony Frost, who was having her first ride in the National, fared best of the domestic runners, finishing a never-dangerous fifth, 32½ lengths behind the winner.

Friday, 6 September 2019

Lucinda Russell Jubilant as One For Arthur Claims the 2017 Grand National Title

Grand National 2017
The pre race favourite Blaklion was backed into 8-1 with Noel Fehily in the saddle and a fine and bright Aintree witnessed the opening throws of the race they’d all been waiting for. Such was the anticipation that two false starts had to be endured before the 169th Randox Health Grand National got underway, but it did, much to the delight of the gathered thousands.

Roi de Franc was the early pace setter, as the first two fences proved too much for Cocktails at Dawn and Vicente. Sam Waley Cohen was forced out on The Young Master just 5 fences later at Becher’s Brook, along with the Raz de Maree as the still 36 strong field jumped the Foinavon fence bathed in brilliant sunshine.

The lead changed hands a number of times and by the Canal Turn, there was a new leader in the form of Rogue Angel ridden by Bryan Cooper with Roi de France tucked in behind closely in 2nd.

The Chair

At the halfway stage, it was ‘as you were’ with the red nose band of Roi de Franc leading by 3 lengths from Rogue Angel and the rest of the field were spread over almost a furlong. Jack Kennedy’s horse was carried out by a riderless horse around the bend, losing a lot of ground, but the 50-1 shot recovered strongly to regain the lead before the next fence.

Around Becher’s again and with the finishing line just 8 fences away, Rogue Angel was looking the stronger of the leading pair, with many wondering just how much energy Roi de Franc would have left after having to recover after nearly exiting the race.

The favourite Blaklion moved with intent to the head of the field shortly after, with Rogue Angel beginning to fade, but Roi de Franc was still hanging in in 3rd. Noel Fehily was really pushing Blaklion over the Melling Road, pulling away to a 3 length lead, but the chasing pack of 10 or so horses included One For Arthur who was travelling particularly well.

Blaklion faltered at the 2nd last, as One For Arthur collided into the back of Noel Fehily’s horse and seem to come out of it looking the stronger of the two and the Scottish trained horse, ridden by Derek Fox struck for home with the crowd seeming to will him home.

Scottish Delight

It would seem to have worked, as One For Arthur stormed through the elbow, leaving Cause For Causes and Davy Russell on Saint Are in his wake and winning by almost 5 lengths. The scottish flags were waving in delight across Aintree, as this Lucinda Russell trained gelding took the accolades and the £561,300 first prize.

A fantastic National day was made all the sweeter to find out that despite there being 21 fallers in the race, all of the horses had returned to their stables safe and sound.

A great day for the sport indeed!

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Rule the World Streaks Home to Win the 2016 Aintree Grand National

Grand National 2016
History repeated itself before the 2016 Crabbie Grand National, as O'Faolains Boy was declared lame on the morning of the race, reducing the field to 39. Another absentee of note was Pineau de Re, the 2014 winner, who didn’t qualify fast enough for the final 40.

Last year’s winner, Many Clouds was installed as 8-1 joint favourite with The Last Samurai, meaning Leighton Aspell was in with a shout of making it 3 Grand National Winners in succession, a feat that had never been achieved by anyone in the 167 previous runnings of the race.

Another wonderfully bright and sunny day graced Aintree at the start of the big 4.15 race. The field got underway with no problems and the first few fences would see Hadrian’s Approach, Holywell and First Lieutenant fall. The running was quite uneventful, with the expected amount of vying for position and 50-1 outsider Aachen as the surprise front runner, with Many Clouds and The Last Samurai well placed.


Though the fall count had been mercifully low up until the approach to the 21st fence, this was about to markedly change as the next two fences (including Becher’s Brook) saw more than a fifth of the field have their races cut short. Amongst them were Denis O’Regan on The Druid’s Nephew, Soll and Sam Waley-Cohen’s mount Black Thunder.

Second Circuit

The two favourites were well in contention over Canal Turn, with last year’s runner up Saint Are in front and looking strong. The going was heavy and several riders who had been in contention were beginning to feel the pace, as the three riders headed for home. The Last Samurai looked to steal a march, but was being tracked by the Mouse Morris trained Rule The World that had joined the front and as Many Clouds made a big mistake and falling four from home, it became a three horse race.

There was nothing in it over the last and going through the elbow, Rule The World edged in front to finish 6 lengths clear.

Having never won over fences before, Rule The World had triumphed in the biggest steeplechase in the sport, truly living up to his name. David Mullins and Mouse Morris were cockahoop as it had turned out to be an unexpectedly momentous day for them and for the Gigginstown House Stud.