If you are still debating on whether or not to buy the tickets to the Grand National Festival, then perhaps you have not come across the list of the competitors this year. Out of the 105 entries, there are several big names, some of which have carried the day in the past. Although this is going to make betting quite risky, it is a pointer to the fact that the race this year will be one of the most interesting in history. Nevertheless, we cannot all fit in Aintree. If you can’t make it to the racecourse, you can still follow the events here and also on ITV as it has won the broadcasting rights to show the races for the second time.
Blacklion is one of the most favorite candidates for the top three positions this year despite having a 9 lb. greater mark. His trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies expresses a lot of confidence in the horse given the fact that he emerged fourth in the event last year. Blacklion is 9 years old and he has 12/1 odds on Betfair. William Mullins’ Total Recall is another prominent horse featured in the 2018 race. He proved to the world his much-improved form after winning the Munster National in October and Ladbrokes trophy in November. He has 14/1 odds at 888. The Last Samuri cannot miss from this list. The 10-year old was the runner-up in 2016 and he has 20/1 odds with most betting sites.
Bellshill, another horse trained by William Mullins, is also among the horses to watch out for this year. The 8-year old had a remarkable Grade 2 novice win at Limerick last year. He has 20/1 odds in most of the sites with the best Grand National free bets such as William Hill. Another interesting entry in the competition this year is Minella Rocco. Trained by Jonjo O’Neill and being 8 years old, the horse has proved to be a thorough fighter. Although he has not been performing very well in his recent races, it will not be surprising to see him clinch one of the top three positions. Betway has placed Minella’s odds at 20/1.
The World’s Greatest Steeplechase to be held on the last day has some fences that are famous for being dangerous. Although the fences have been altered to make them less perilous, they are still a cause of a headache for many jockeys. At five foot three inches, ‘The Chair’ is the highest and scariest fence. ‘Becher’s Brook’ is also a nightmare to many horses even though it is not very tall. This is partly because the takeoff and landing sides have a difference of 10 inches with the latter being deeper. At the ‘Canal Turn’, horses are required to negotiate a sharp corner to the left immediately after successfully jumping this obstacle that is five feet tall.
This season, there are several new rules and one requires some of the horses to start in a race in order to qualify for the Aintree marathon. The horses that will participate in this race include Pendar, Saint Are, Knock House, Bellshill, Morning Assembly, Jim Beaumonth’s Maggio and Seeyouatmidnight. Pairofbrowneyes and Traffic Fluide were supposed to finish first, second, third or fourth with at least ‘two miles seven and a half furlongs’ before March 19 if at all they were to qualify and their fate is yet to be known.
If you are still interested in purchasing tickets to the event, you should stop taking your sweet time as most of them are increasingly becoming sold out. As of March 16, the only tickets left were Steeplechase and Tattersall at £29 and £59 respectively. The tickets can be obtained from the Grand National official website.