Tiger Roll on course to bid for National history

Back-to-back winner is one of 105 Aintree entries.

  • Wednesday 29 January
  • News
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Tiger Roll is the headline act among 105 entries for the £1million Randox Health Grand National.

Gordon Elliott’s charge became the first horse since Red Rum to win back-to-back renewals of the Aintree spectacular last season.

The Gigginstown House Stud-owned 10-year-old is the 7-1 favourite with Betway to emulate Ginger McCain’s legendary stayer by claiming the world’s richest jumps race for a third time on April 4.

Elliott has made a total of 18 entries, more than any other trainer. If successful for a fourth time, the Cullentra handler would become the joint most successful trainer in Grand National history, alongside McCain and Fred Rimell.

Also among Elliott’s team are leading Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup contender Delta Work and exciting novice Champagne Classic.

Willie Mullins has assembled a 10-strong squad, which includes Irish Grand National victor Burrows Saint, Topham Chase winner Cadmium and last week’s Thyestes Chase hero Total Recall.

There were two previous Cheltenham Gold Cup winners in the mix, in Colin Tizzard’s Native River and the Jessica Harrington-trained Sizing John. However, the latter was later scratched after suffering a season-ending injury.

Harrington also entered last year’s runner-up Magic Of Light – bidding to become the first mare to win the Grand National since Nickel Coin in 1951, while Lucinda Russell’s 2017 National hero One For Arthur could bid to regain his crown.

Bristol De Mai is one of seven entries for dual National-winning trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies – while other hopefuls include Robert Walford’s dual Becher winner Walk In The Mill, Tom Lacey’s Classic Chase victor Kimberlite Candy and the Sue Smith-trained Vintage Clouds.

The latter was an impressive winner of this month’s Peter Marsh Chase at Haydock – and while connections were cool on a return to Aintree in the immediate aftermath, he has been entered.

Vintage Clouds fell at the first in last year’s National and was pulled up in the Becher Chase over the famous fences last month.

Sue Smith, who tasted Grand National success in 2013 with Auroras Encore, said: “After consideration we have decided to enter Vintage Clouds for the Grand National.

“Having discussed it at length with Trevor (Hemmings, owner), we decided that having won so well in the Peter Marsh, it was worth keeping our options open until nearer the time.

“He has slightly struggled over the Aintree fences, particularly in the Becher, but we want to keep all options on the table for the time being. He jumped superbly in the Peter Marsh and has come out of the race very well.”

Other high-profile entries include the Paul Nicholls-trained Give Me A Copper, who is part-owned by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, and Christian Williams’ Welsh National winner Potters Corner – who counts Wales rugby union international Jonathan Davies among his owners.

The weights for the Randox Health Grand National will be unveiled before an invited audience at St George’s Hall in Liverpool on February 11.

Tiger Roll on course to bid for National history
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