Grand National Event Guide

Headline above is generated automatically, event name + topic

This is our comprehensive Grand National guide with all you need to know about the world’s greatest steeplechase. We have all the details and info about the Aintree showpiece. With 40 runners in the race, even the most experienced punters can benefit from reading a Grand National form guide just so you have a resource to hand before and during betting. That is what we have asked our experts to do and they have compiled on this very page. There is information about all the Aintree hopefuls before entries are announced in January ahead of the main event in April. What you have at your fingertips here is a detailed Grand National race guide containing all the form and data that can help you find the winner. We also cater for more casual punters too.

It’s estimated that about two-thirds of the adult population in the UK place a bet on this race. This is more than just a Grand National pinstickers guide as we take you through detailed coverage of the world-famous handicap chase. We’ll introduce you to the entire Grand National Festival on this page. There are three days of action in and around the feature contest at Aintree, plus a word or two on the jockeys and horses that help make the Grand National what it is. As well as highlighting what things you should be looking out for prior to placing a bet, our Grand National guide also contains betting tips from our horse racing experts. We start by telling you a little bit about one of the team behind the coverage.

98/100
Rating
888 Highlights
  • Deposit & bet £10, get £30 bonuses
  • Back 4/1+ winner, get £5 bonus
  • Horse Price Boosts 15 mins before off
PayPal
UKGC - UK Gambling Commission
300% up to
£30
888 Review Visit Provider
Show All Providers

Grand National Event Guide

Author Bio

Our very own Jamie Clark was Coral bookmakers’ Sports Editor for a highly successful and major period in their history. As GVC Holdings formed and they merged with Ladbrokes, he made Coral’s digital platforms into a go-to place for sports betting tips, features and guest blog content from some influential figures.

Horse racing was naturally a major part of that. Jamie has a personal background in this particular sport, as he grew up near Market Rasen Racecourse in Lincolnshire where his late godfather ran a bookies’ trackside pitch. With a lifelong interest in horse racing, he has since been used by major operators in the industry, putting together a Grand National guide for Paddy Power and similar content for William Hill and Betfair. The bookmakers go to him when they need someone to really hone in on a major horse racing festival. Jamie is no slouch when it comes to the Grand National form guide, previously tipping a winning forecast in 2018 with Tiger Roll and Pleasant Company.

He pays close attention to the Irish racehorses being aimed at Aintree, given how the race is targeted by many in the Emerald Isle due to the massive prize money on offer. A regular punter on both National Hunt and Flat horse racing, Jamie isn’t afraid to put his money where his mouth is. Alongside the rest of our team of tipsters and experts, he’ll be compiling a detailed Grand National race guide for you.

98/100
Rating
PayPal
UKGC - UK Gambling Commission
300% up to
£30
888 Review Visit Provider

Introduction to the Grand National Festival

Did you know there are 20 other races to bet on during the Grand National Festival over three days? It all kicks off with the opening day of the meeting on the Thursday before the Aintree showpiece. The day 1 card contains four Grade 1 races which are headed by the Betway Bowl – an open steeplechase on the Mildmay course over about three miles and a furlong – and the two-and-a-half miles Aintree Hurdle. Hunter chasers also run over the Grand National fences in the Foxhunters’ Chase.

Ladies Day is the Friday of the Grand National Festival and also has four Grade 1s among the action then. The feature of those is the Melling Chase over two-and-a-half miles, supported by novice events and the Grade 3 Topham Chase raced as a handicap on the National course over a similar trip to the Melling.

Grand National day itself at Aintree has three Grade 1s in the build up to the big one. Those are headed by the Liverpool Hurdle over an extended three miles. Attention then focuses on the Grand National, a Grade 3 handicap chase over 30 fences and two circuits at a total distance of four-and-a-quarter miles.

Each and every day at the Grand National Festival has handicaps for punters who like those types of races to bet on. There are also National Hunt Flat Races, colloquially called bumpers, on the Thursday for mares and an open event on the Friday which both hold Grade 2 status. You should find there’s something for every punter to bet on at this meeting.

History of the Grand National

The Grand National was first officially run in 1839, but there were three unofficial races in the preceding years from 1836. Those were technically held at Maghull rather than Aintree, however, with the first two events won by the same horse, The Duke. The first official winner of the race was Lottery and how apt that is, because the race’s history is littered with incidents that would see our Grand National form guide thrown out the window. What really helped this race to become the global phenomenon we know it as today with a worldwide TV audience of more than 500,000,000 was the coming of the railways.

It brought more racegoers from outside of Liverpool and its environs to Aintree. Abd El-Kader was the first multiple winner of official Grand Nationals, doubling up in 1850 and 1851. The Lamb won it four years apart, first aged six in 1868 and then again in 1871, becoming the first horse to regain the Aintree showpiece. In the intervening two years, the Grand National went to another multiple winner – The Colonel – on both occasions. Manifesto, after whom the Manifesto Novices’ Chase which opens the Aintree Festival is named, also won it twice – first in 1897 and then regained it 1899. There was a rare French winner in 1909 in Lutteur III, one of five five-year-olds to triumph in Grand National history.

Interwar Period, Aftermath and Foinavon

Horse racing at Aintree halted during the First World War in 1916, 1917 and 1918, but resumed the following year. The 1930s saw five-time Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Golden Miller complete a memorable double with the Grand National in 1934. Reynoldstown became the next multiple winner in the following two years. Battleship’s success in 1938 is also worth highlighting as he is the only horse to win the American Grand National and this race on the other side of the Atlantic.

The Second World War again interrupted proceedings at Aintree which resumed in 1946. Nickel Coin is the last of 13 mares to win the Grand National to date with her 1951 success. Ten years later, Nicholaus Silver became only the second grey horse to record victory. From 1960 onwards, the Grand National has been broadcast on free terrestrial television in the UK. Broadcasting live pictures of the event has certainly helped its popularity to surge and internationalise it in the modern era. The win for Foinavon in 1967 is one of the least likely successes in Grand National history at 100/1, but fortune favoured him as a melee and pile-up of horses at the fence between Becher’s Brook and the Canal Turn which he avoided by being so far behind and jumping wide out on the Aintree course. That obstacle, one of the smallest on the track, has been named after Foinavon ever since.

Red Rum and Modern Grand Nationals

For any Grand National guide in modern times, one horse stands out more than any other. Red Rum was trained on the beaches of Southport up the Lancashire coast from Liverpool by Ginger McCain and first landed Aintree glory in 1973. He then followed-up off top weight the following year and then lost his Grand National crown in 1975 to dual Cheltenham Gold Cup winner L’Escargot. Red Rum finished second that season and the following campaign, before landing his unprecedented Aintree treble aged 12 in 1977. A false start in 1993 led the Grand National race to be declared void, much to the annoyance of many punters.

The resurgence of Irish trained horses coming over to Aintree and winning started around the turn of the century. Victories for Bobbyjo in 1999 and Papillon for father-son trainer-jockey duo of Ted and Ruby Walsh paved the way for others from the Emerald Isle to follow. It wasn’t as though Grand National history wasn’t littered with winning Irish connections, but it had until that point become rarer. Monty’s Pass ridden by Barry Geraghty in 2003, Hedgehunter from the Willie Mullins stable in 2005, Numbersixvalverde for Martin Brassil in 2006 and Gordon Elliott’s Silver Birch in 2007 continued this. Neptune Collonges became the third and final grey to date to win the Grand National in 2012 for Paul Nicholls during his dominance of British jumps racing.

The trend has swung back to Ireland since, however, despite the late great Many Clouds and his fine weight carrying performance in 2015. Gigginstown House Stud have been a real force at Aintree in recent times, with the major Irish owners winning courtesy of Rule The World in 2016 and the mighty Tiger Roll in consecutive years (2018 and 2019).

98/100
Rating
PayPal
UKGC - UK Gambling Commission
300% up to
£30
888 Review Visit Provider
97/100
Rating
PayPal
UKGC - UK Gambling Commission
£100 Free Bet Freebets
Betfair Review Visit Provider
97/100
Rating
Credit Card
UKGC - UK Gambling Commission
100% up to
£25
Spreadex Review Visit Provider

Grand National Betting Tips

There is much more than just a Grand National pinstickers guide on offer here. Thanks to our dedicated team of tipsters, who are horse racing experts, you can get betting tips on this world-famous race. Their Grand National form guide even shows you their working as they get to a shortlist of horses to consider. Given how competitive and unpredictable races on the course at Aintree can be, you’ll be glad you checked it out. Our betting tips and Grand National race guide really do go hand in hand, giving detailed analysis to put you in the picture before you place a wager.

With a guaranteed maximum of 40 runners to assess the credentials of, the tipsters put forward five leading contenders and three dangers, think of these as dark horses who are very much in the mix. Any Grand National guide will tell you that history shows big outsiders outrunning their odds can happen, so our experts also look at value each-way angles into the race. Whatever type of punter you are, there should be something to take your fancy in our extensive Grand National betting tips service which extends to all the action during the Festival at Aintree.

The Jockeys

Another crucial aspect of our Grand National race guide is who exactly will be riding each of the horses involved. There is no substitute for a jockey having plenty of Aintree experience. Our Grand National pinstickers guide makes that perfectly clear. This isn’t just a test for horses, but jockeys too. Only the brave and best riders and their mounts will make it round. Fluent jumping from the equine athletes and knowing when to sit tight make or break jockeys’ hopes of Aintree glory. Riders have to go out there with a plan, but be flexible enough with it to react to what happens in and around them. This race is such a lottery that it only takes a faller in front and, if you haven’t angled out your mount, then you can kiss goodbye to the Grand National form guide with a melee or pile up on your hands. Thanks to our experts, we identify the jockeys with the best record at Aintree on the course. We’ve detailed information on who the leading riders at this venue are. Taking previous performances and results into account, you’ll know who the Grand National jockeys to follow are for this year’s renewal.

98/100
Rating
PayPal
UKGC - UK Gambling Commission
300% up to
£30
888 Review Visit Provider

5 Things to Look Out for Before the Grand National

A Grand National pinstickers guide should highlight key attributes for you to be looking out for before placing your bets, and we’re not different in this regard. According to our horse racing experts, these are things you should be looking out for in a horse’s profile before backing it for Aintree:

Stamina

It may be an obvious place to start, but the Grand National is a four-and-a-quarter miles slog over many fences that are larger than regulation size. You have to stay and demonstrate abundant stamina to have any hope of getting round the course, let alone winning the Aintree showpiece. Our Grand National guide will highlight the horses that have excelled over long distances, so you know which will be able to carry on when others cannot.

Rating

Although the Grand National is a handicap and lower rated horses carry lighter loads, there are times when the weights are formed by some very classy animals. What do you do then? Back a well-handicapped horse or go for a big name? That is where our Grand National race guide comes in. Our team of experts work hard to highlight instances where horses have got in at Aintree lightly or are well-in after the weights are released in February. Their official Grand National rating can be revealing as to their capabilities when tackling the unique demands of Aintree.

Course Form

Sometimes it doesn’t matter how good a racehorse is, they just don’t take to the Grand National fences. Any animal with good course form at Aintree suddenly becomes of interest. It may be from a previous Grand National, the Becher Chase, Grand Sefton or Topham Chase, but an aptitude for the track and obstacles is a clear positive. It’s just like the old saying goes, there are such things as horses for courses!

Grand National Trials

In both the UK and Ireland, there are many unofficial trials for Aintree. You will find this Grand National pinstickers guide highlights where a horse has won one of these other races. Check out the list below of so-called trials for this feature event:

  • Becher Handicap Chase, Aintree
  • Welsh Grand National, Chepstow
  • Classic Handicap Chase, Warwick
  • Thyestes Handicap Chase, Gowran Park
  • Eider Handicap Chase, Newcastle
  • Irish Grand National Trial, Punchestown
  • Grand National Trial, Haydock Park
  • Bobbyjo Chase, Fairyhouse
  • Grimthorpe Handicap Chase, Doncaster
  • National Hunt Chase, Cheltenham Festival
  • Cross Country Chase, Cheltenham Festival
  • Cheltenham Gold Cup
  • Midlands Grand National, Uttoxeter
  • Irish Grand National, Fairyhouse
  • Scottish Grand National, Ayr
  • Boylesports Handicap Chase, Punchestown Festival

Ground

The Grand National is in some ways like any other race. If the going is against a horse, then it probably won’t win. In fact, in respect of this test at Aintree, they might not even get round. Soft or even heavy going makes the Grand National into an even more extreme test of stamina, for example. Knowing how a horse will act on the surface it encounters at Aintree before even thinking about the fences is another key consideration for you before betting.

The Grand National Horses

Grand National Runners 2020

This Grand National race guide naturally shines the spotlight on the equine athletes taking part at Aintree. From the moment the initial entries are revealed in January, through the announcement of the Grand National weights given out in February and through the various declaration and forfeit stages, the field is whittled down to the 40 who head to Merseyside in search of sporting immortality. We celebrate the horses testing themselves against obstacles like Becher’s Brook and The Chair on their way around Aintree each and every April here in our Grand National guide.

Without trainers and owners of thoroughbreds dreaming of glory on Merseyside, none of this would be possible. What our Grand National form guide does is put you in the picture about those animals and their prospects of winning. It’s all well and good for a horse to have won en route to Aintree, but it may result in it being badly handicapped for the big race. Equine participation is an essential ingredient of horse racing, and we’ll mention the top horses taking aim at the Grand National during the course of the jumps season. They are the heroes and faces of the sport, and their successes are to be celebrated here more than anywhere else.

Grand National Event Guide, Pinstickers & Form Guide

By looking at the various parts of this page, you should have the complete Grand National guide that you need. Horses, jockeys, owners and trainers come together at Aintree to make this event into the spectacle that it is. Some of you readers want a Grand National pinstickers guide that keeps this complex race simple. We provide that, but also more detailed analysis of which horses are worth betting on and why. A comprehensive Grand National form guide furnishes you with everything you need in order to make an informed choice about betting on the Aintree showpiece. Information and data is key to successful wagering. However, as we know that so many UK adults place bets on this particular race, we cater for novice punters with this Grand National pinstickers guide offering basic advice. Just remember, anything can happen and nobody betting, however experienced, can be right all of the time. We hope that using our Grand National form guide will enable you to have a bit of fun engaging with the curiously popular public event. All the key action at Aintree remains free to air on UK TV, so you won’t miss all the thrills and spills of jumps horse racing at its most dramatic. Thanks to our Grand National pinstickers guide, you’ll also be clued up on the world’s most famous steeplechase!

Top Betting Sites
Top Betting Bonuses
Move to Top
×
Your Bonus Code:
The bonus offer was already opened in an additional window. If not, you can open it also by clicking the following link:
Go to Provider
Close
Did someone order a bonus to go? Grab it while it's hot!