Saturday, April 17, 2021

Scottish Grand National 2021

Sponsors Coral regularly reference the Scottish Grand National as generating their fourth highest turnover of any race in the calendar. 

The most recent renewal took place on 13th April 2019 when Nicky Richards' Takingrisks foiled Crosspark's attempt to become the first horse since Willsford in1995 to win both the Eider and the Scottish National in the same season. 

This year's Eider winner Sam's Adventure has been raised eight pounds for his trouble (in a race which saw Big River pulled up and The Dutchman unseat rider). 

Nicky Richards saddles two - Chapel Stile has done most of his racing on soft / heavy ground while Chidswell beat Dingo Dollar in the 2019 Grimthorpe Chase at Doncaster and bids to become the first twelve-year-old to come home in front since Willsford.

23 runners went to post two years ago, with five withdrawn on the day on account of the drying ground - including Dingo Dollar. At the time of writing Vintage Clouds has been declared a non-runner leaving 22 set to face the starter at 3.35 tomorrow - the smallest field to go to post for a number of years.

Aye Right is an admirable sort; Harriet Graham's charge likes to race prominently and heads the market but looks in the grip of the handicapper.

Notachance certainly has a chance in a race Alan King likes to target - he trained Godsmejudge to win in 2013. 

This one won the Classic Chase at Warwick with something in hand and then suffered a nasty injury next time when pulled up behind Lord Du Mesnil at at Haydock. The handler reports the gelding in fine form now but the prep has been a little rushed; connections considered waiting for the bet365 Chase at Sandown next week but have decided to take their chance here.

Former Alan King inmate Dingo Dollar looks the pick of Sandy Thomson's two runners with Brian Hughes up. The Ferry Man is respected but much of his form to date has been in small fields.

Soldier Of Love is Paul Nicholls' representative with Truckers Lodge and Highland Hunter not making the final declaration stage. This one will certainly appreciate good ground; the handler won the 2016 and 2017 renewals with Vicente.

Tom Scudamore picks up a plum ride aboard Mighty Thunder after regular pilot Blair Campbell failed to recover from a recent hand injury. Lucinda Russell's charge won the Edinburgh National in February and then finished a highly creditable second to Time To Get Up in the Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter last month. The gelding clearly stays and should handle the ground; the handicapper has raised the horse 14 pounds for his last two efforts.

Mister Fogpatches is the sole Irish raider with Danny Mullins taking the ride. The gelding handles good ground but remains a maiden over fences. 

Big River finished fifth behind Takingrisks in 2019 but is one whose jumping has never really convinced.

Among those at bigger prices Some Chaos, Coup De Pinceau and Chef D'Oeuvre are of interest.

Some Chaos finished third behind Secret Investor and Potterman at Chepstow in October and then beat Claud and Goldie over three and a quarter miles at Kelso. On his next start he finished fifth behind El Presente in the Badgers Beers Silver Trophy at Wincanton, beaten under six lengths after encountering some trouble in running three out. 

He has since had a break and a couple of warm-up runs over hurdles; connections appear to have decided on a first try at this marathon trip after Wincanton - the gelding has shown his best form on decent ground.

Coup De Pinceau moved out to Nick Mitchell's yard in Dorset last December. On his second run for new connections Coup De Pinceau won over an extended three and a half mile trip at Taunton where he appeared to appreciate the hold-up tactics employed. Angus Cheleda claims a useful seven pounds. 

Chef D'Ouevre moved from Warren Greatrex to Sam England in 2018 and has clearly had his problems. He has undergone two wind operations in the past 18 months and had a spell of 606 days off the track. That said, when he made it to Haydock he appeared to like the place, winning there over three miles three and, on his latest start, over three miles four and a half furlongs; in the past he has run well on good ground. 

Sky Bet stood out offering 50/1 about this one in their first show yesterday; at the moment he's best-priced with Paddy Power who offer 30/1.

A quick mention in passing for Cool Mix who isn't totally disregarded but wouldn't be guaranteed to stay and for Dino Boy too who is eight pounds 'wrong' at the weights but has won over this distance previously and is owned by Mr & Mrs Raymond Anderson Green, winners of the prize in 2010 and 2012 with Merigo.

From the bigger priced runners the two considered are Some Chaos and Chef D'Oeuvre. 

Off a mark of 142 the former is a better fit with the profiles of previous winners and looks to have been trained specifically for the race; this is his first try beyond three and a quarter miles.    

Off a mark of 129 Chef D'Oeuvre races from two pounds out of the handicap but looks to have a respectable chance of seeing the trip out.

Some Chaos is the each-way suggestion, at the time of writing 20/1 with Betfred who pay 6 places.

1 comment:

GeeDee said...

The two Sandy Thomson runners, Dingo Dollar (7/1f) and The Ferry Master (20/1), kicked on rounding the home turn for the final time and looked to have the race between them.

The Ferry Master's stamina gave way from three out leaving Dingo Dollar clear but the leader was hunted down by Mighty Thunder (8/1) as they raced to the last and was passed by Tom Scudamore's mount on the run-in.

Mister Fogpatches (8/1) did well to finish third while The Ferry Master claimed fourth, Cool Mix fifth (28/1) and Chidswell (40/1) sixth.

Selection Some Chaos (28/1) raced prominently for three miles but the distress signals started to come out on the home turn - he clearly failed to stay the extended trip and was pulled up before three out.