Friday, March 18, 2011

Midlands Grand National 2011

After Long Run's historic win at Cheltenham earlier today, the racing roadshow moves on with the Midlands Grand National the feature at Uttoxeter tomorrow. 18 runners face the starter where the going is described as soft, good to soft in places. I'm guessing the ground will be pretty tacky as it has been drying out for a few days now. Top weight Synchronised won this last year but carries another seven pounds on this occasion and has to give a minimum of 13 pounds to the rest of the field - it looks a big ask. Synchronised's victory apart, in the previous eight runnings the biggest weight the winner has shouldered is 10-9; half the field have to carry more than their allotted handicap weight but in 2002 The Bunny Boiler was nine pounds out of the handicap when winning at odds of 5/1. Paul Nicholls' Tricky Trickster has had a breathing operation since we last saw him in November and has the Aintree National as his target. Companero took the Eider at Newcastle three short weeks ago in atrocious ground (Belon Gale and Ballyfoy pulled up) - he's 11 now and may not have had sufficient time to recover. I like Richard Lee's diminutive gelding Le Beau Bai; ideally he needs more rain in the ground and does find himself getting detached in his races but at 12/1 with Skybet he's worth an each-way wager in a difficult-looking event - the majority of layers are offering a quarter the odds four places.

1 comment:

GeeDee said...

Given the lackof rain, I was more hopeful than confident about Le Beau Bai (10/1) but trainer's son Tom Lee was quite bullish on The Morning Line, saying there was one of these big handicaps in this horse. That may well be the case but it wasn't this one as an error at the third effectively put him out of the race - he was pulled up after the 15th. Plenty of incident in the race which went to 25/1 shot Minella Four Star; only four of the original 17 starters completed.