Guide to the Grand National (continued).
11. Roberto Goldback; trainer Dessie Hughes is mob-handed in the race and the suggestion is this inmate will wait for the Guinness Gold Cup at Punchestown.
12. Black Apalachi; fell in 2008 but still going well when coming down at Bechers’ in Mon Mome’s year in 2009 and carried my cash bravely when runner up to Don’t Push It 12-months later. Has only had one run in 2 years, and now a teenager, but ran a cracker in the Bobbyjo Chase back in February and Denis O’Regan booked again.
13. Deep Purple; winner over 3m 4f at Sandown in December but needs decent ground if he is going to stay over the additional mile. Others in the yard have better credentials.
14. Junior; bidding to become the first horse to win at Royal Ascot, Cheltenham Festival and the Grand National. Ran a great prep race at Doncaster last month for David Pipe who saddled Comply Or Die to glory in 2008 and whose father Martin also trained the winner when Miinehoma won for Freddie Star in 1994.
15. Apt Approach; appears more likely to run in the Irish equivalent on Easter Monday but could be re-routed by trainer Willie Mullins following news that Prince De Beauchene is injured and misses the race.
16. Pyscho: Another who, at the time of writing, is considered more likely to run at Fairyhouse in the Irish National than at Aintree. Yet to win beyond 2m 4f and readily overlooked if he makes the trip.
17. Chicago Grey; winner over 4m at Cheltenham last year for Irish handler Gordon Elliot who saddled Silver Birch to win the race back in 2007. Another grey who has to buck a 50-year trend but looks to have been given a typical “Irish” preparation for the race and a lively contender.
18. Tatenen; winner of the BetVictor.com Handicap Chase at Ascot back in January but stamina must be an issue as he has not won beyond 2m 6f. Not for me.
19. According To Pete; winner of two of his last three starts and in the form of his life for a trainer who had two winners at the recent Cheltenham Festival.
20. Seabass: trained in Ireland by Ted Walsh who saddled Papillon to victory when ridden by his son Ruby back in 2000; unbeaten in his last seven starts from two to three miles and would attract further support if leading jockey Ruby Walsh was confirmed as the jockey.